World number four Padraig Harrington struggled to a 2-over par 74 in the first round of the PGA’s Pebble Beach National Pro-Am in California, continuing his slow start to the season.

The Irishman closed nine shots adrift of the clubhouse leaders after a run of three bogeys in his first four holes. Countryman Paul McGinley fared little better, finishing level par.

Americans Robert Garrigus and Dustin Johnson top the leaderboard after 7-under par 65s, with former PGA Champion Rich Beem on 6-under. “I look forward to golf courses playing long — that’s my game,” said Garrigus.

With three courses being used over the first three days, Poppy Hills played the more difficult with Mike Weir and veteran Mark Calcavecchia doing best there with rounds of 67.

Defending champion Steve Lowery made a solid start, but consecutive bogeys at eight and nine slowed his progress and he closed five shots back.

The tournament features a number of celebrities, including singer Justin Timberlake and actor Bill Murray.

Meanwhile, at the Malaysain Open Anthony Kim bounced back from a poor first round, shooting 65, which looks good enough to make the cut.

Thirty-six-year-old Malaysian and local favourite Danny Chia fired two eagles to take a three-stroke clubhouse lead on 13-under par.  

Where next?

New equipment reviews: Galvin Green Ascot jacket review; Wilson Staff Smooth driver review
Gallery: Ping’s 50 years in the golf industry
Competition: WIN a pair of top instruction DVDs – Guess the golf course