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ILE-BIZARD, Que. - That's why they call it the luck of the draw.
Half the field at the RBC Canadian Open goes off in the morning, the other half in the afternoon and given golf is played outdoors over 300 acres over the course of 12 hours for the first two rounds, the conditions can be a crap shoot.
The early starters got a bit of an advantage Thursday at Royal Montreal Golf Club with less wind and Manotick, Ont.'s Brad Fritsch, teeing off in the last group of the day, couldn't have gotten further from the best conditions Thursday.
He scraped out a 2-over par 72 Thursday and finds himself in a tie for 106th place in our national championship.
The 36-year-old, battling to keep his PGA Tour privileges at 168th on the earnings list with $266,091, said he's hoping an earlier start Friday for round two (9 a.m. off the first tee) will help get him in a position to make his seventh cut of the season in 17 events.
"Tomorrow the greens will be a little better in the morning. I was a little fuzzy on my speed today. (The greens) were a little inconsistent and you could start to see the footprints, especially having the last tee time.
"The weird part all day was having to hit them. Usually you don't have to think about hitting them."
The wind rustled up in the afternoon a bit, too.
Fritsch started with a birdie on his first hole of the day (the 10th), but wound up with a 2-over 37 on the front with another birdie on 12 offset by bogeys on 11, 13, 15 and 18.
He hit it better coming in (he missed about a 3-footer for birdie on the par-5 sixth after a wonderful long explosion from a greenside bunker) and added a birdie on eight for an even-par 35 on his inward nine.
Americans Michael Putnam and Tim Petrovic - the first alternate, who went in for Benjamin Alvarado - share the first-round lead with 6-under-par 64s (both from the afternoon draw, by the way).