Kingston Leads BMW PGA Championship

James Kingston of South Africa fired a 6-under 66 to take the opening-round lead in the BMW PGA Championship. The tournament began Thursday at the Wentworth Club in Surrey, England.

Not all the players finished as bad weather came through the area in late afternoon, suspending play until Friday morning. With the threat of lightning, play was halted at 3:42 p.m., with the final group having just teed off. Play resumed about 90 minutes later.

Kingston is playing on a sponsor's invitation after losing his European Tour card last season. The 47-year-old carded seven birdies and a bogey for a one-stroke lead over Finland's Mikko Ilonen. Scotland's Scott Henry and Spain's Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano completed their 68s before play was stopped.

"I never felt like I played poorly enough to lose my card and that's what makes it even more frustrating," Kingston told reporters. The last of his two European Tour victories came at the Mercedes Benz Championship in 2009.

"I felt like I played half-decent throughout the whole (2012) season, but just never managed to put a score on the board. It does make it a little harder to accept. Getting an invite into this event, what a great feeling to be back here. I think I've made the most of it today."

Other scores included a 69 by Denmark's Thomas Bjorn and 70s by Lee Westwood and Martin Kaymer. Three-time BMW PGA champion Colin Montgomerie opened with a 71.

American Peter Uihlein, who notched his first European Tour title last week in the Madeira Islands Open in Portugal, also had a 71.

Defending champion Luke Donald opened with a 6-over 78, and Rory McIlroy had a 74, a score matched by his playing partner, fellow Northern Irishman Graeme McDowell. McDowell won last week's Volvo World Match Play Championship.

Sergio Garcia, who created a firestorm of controversy when he answered a question at a players' dinner Tuesday night about getting together with Tiger Woods at the U.S. Open by saying, "We'll have him 'round every night. We will serve fried chicken," had a 72.

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