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Slick PGA start for Wilkinson in Charlotte

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 5/05/2016

A final hole chip-in has catapulted New Zealand golfer Tim Wilkinson into a share of sixth place following the first round of the US PGA Tour event in Charlotte.

Wilkinson defied cold, windy conditions in the morning to card a four-under 68 and sit three shots behind American co-leaders Steve Wheatcroft and Andrew Loupe at the Wells Fargo Championship.

The 37-year-old says his pitching game was on-song throughout the round, and finished off with a polished chip for birdie on the par-four 18th hole.

"It was just one of those ones that you feel like you're going to make," he said.

The left-hander has been solid if unspectacular this season, making the cut in eight out of 10 tournaments but failing to finish inside the top-20.

Before this week he had topped earnings of $US180,000 ($NZ261,250) and was 148th on the tour points standings.

Thursday's round helped Wilkinson emerge from the shadow usually cast by Kiwi No.1 Danny Lee, who could only manage a 72 at the Quail Hollow Club to share 53rd place.

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