The event is being played in its regularly scheduled position of Labor Weekend and thus plays Friday through Monday to take advantage of Monday’s public holiday in the US.
Leishman played in the morning field today at the TPC Boston and raced through the opening nine in 32, the only hiccup in that stretch coming at the par 4-5th where he missed the fairway and green and was unable to get up and down.
He dropped another shot at the 13th after again missing the fairway and green but hit a nice pitch from behind the green at the par five 18th to set up one final birdie and at 4 under he is nicely placed despite this being only round one.
Leishman has moved from his 20th position in the FedEx Cup points table to a projected 8th but it is early days yet.
“They were pretty tough conditions and nice to get off to a good solid start especially after last week – dropping a few spots and missing the cut,” Leishman told PGA Tour Radio. “I feel like I have plenty to play for this week.
“It’s been the big difference this year. In the past I feel like I have been coming from behind but this year there have been a lot more good first rounds and then you are not thinking about making the cut or just scraping through.”
Leishman has made the cut in seven of eight starts in this event in fact in his very first start a final round of 66 helped him into the following event, the BMW in which he finished runner-up and so went on to make the Tour Championship in his rookie season which was a huge achievement on its own.
Leishman is tied in second position with Jon Rahm, Sergio Garcia and Kyle Stanley but the man they trail Johnson picked up where he left off last Sunday when winning the Northern Trust.
Despite missing the cut in New York Leishman has had a great season in 2017 including his win at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and just three starts ago finished 6th at the Open Championship
Johnson began his morning round at the 10th and with three birdies, an eagle and a bogey he was at 4 under through the turn. He bogeyed his 10th hole but then added further birdies at his 11th and 13th holes and when he finished his round in the early afternoon he led and stayed in front all day.
Former winner Adam Scott is in 29th position after an opening round of even par 71, unable to take advantage of his very early tee time when in the first group off from the 10th tee. Sixteen pars, one birdie and one bogey tells the story of an unadventurous round for the 2003 champion.
Rod Pampling is 42nd after his round of 72, but Jason Day (75) and Cameron Smith (76) have work to do if they are to be around for the weekend in this restricted field.
The cut appears as if it might fall at 4 over and while Day and Smith will still make the BVMW Championship in two weeks’ time even if they miss out on the final 36 holes here Pampling needs to make the cut and advance his cause if he is to play in Illinois.
WEEKEND PINS - THE VINTAGE