Appleby certainly did not appear as if he would be the leading Australian at the end of the day when he found the water at his first hole (the 10th). After further dropped shots at the 12th and 13th he fought back with three late birdies before the turn to be at level par and right in the mix.
Bogeys at his 10th and 18th holes saw him finish with 73 which given that he was forced to qualify to play his 14th US Open and that his game in the main in the past 18 months has been well below his best was a solid enough start.
Robert Allenby kept everybody guessing, including his possible replacement Jarrod Lyle, as to whether he would play or not until this morning but soon after he did he may have wished had had not. He dropped three shots in his first three holes but steadied the ship although a double at the 11th and a bogey at the last put the dampener on what otherwise was a very good effort given the uncertainty of his pre tournament preparation.
Adam Scott and Marc Leishman had 77 each as did Michael Sim who made a good start when he reached the 7th tee of his round at 1 under and well in the hunt until he dropped six shots in his next five holes.
Stephen Allan and Terry Pilkadaris had 78 as did New Zealander Michael Campbell.
Geoff Ogilvy was very ordinary in his round of 79, while Aaron Baddeley, Paul Sheehan and John Senden had rounds of 80.
With the cut score looking to be around 8 or 9 over the ten shot rule may also come into effect. Any player within ten shots of the lead tomorrow night will also get to play the weekend irrespective of where they stand in the field.