Donaldson boosts Ryder Cup bid with Czech Masters lead

AFP| Updated: Aug 22, 2014, 12:35 PM IST

Prague: Jamie Donaldson boosted his hopes of a maiden Ryder Cup appearance by taking a one-shot lead after the first round of the Czech Masters on Thursday.

The Welshman carded a six-under-par 66 at Prague`s Albatross Golf Resort to lead by one from Sweden`s Mikael Lundberg while fellow Ryder Cup hopefuls, Stephen Gallacher and Joost Luiten, fired two-under-par rounds of 70.

Donaldson said he will not get distracted by speculation over the Ryder Cup team to face the United States at Gleneagles in September although a finish in the top seven should be enough to secure an automatic selection.

"I know what I`ve got to do this week so it`s just a case of going out and doing it. It`s another golf tournament where you`ve got to go out there and play as well as you can and content to win the tournament," said the 38-year-old.

"I`m in a position to do that now; I just need more of the same over the next three rounds.

"You can`t go too heavily into it, you have to go out there and it`s just one shot at a time like any other week. There are other things circling around this result but you have to get on with it and keep doing the same things you`ve been doing every week."

Donaldson carded four birdies in an outward score of 33, but then dropped a shot when he drove into a bunker at the 11th.

But a birdie at the 12th, an approach to eight feet at the 14th and two closing birdies sealed the overnight lead.