World Tour Championship first round leaderboard
-6 S Lowry (Ire), R McIlroy (NI); -5 R Ramsay (Sco), T Olesen (Den); -4 E Grillo (Arg), H Stenson (Swe); Selected others -2: L Westwood (Eng), -1 V Dubuisson (Fr), J Rose (Eng); level G McDowell (NI); +1 S Garcia (Sp); +3 I Poulter (Eg); +4 L Donald (Eng)
World number one Rory McIlroy hit a six-under 66 to share the first-round lead at the World Tour Championship.In his first tournament for six weeks because of legal wrangles, the 25-year-old began imperiously with four birdies in his opening five holes in Dubai.
McIlroy did not drop a shot but playing partner Henrik Stenson mixed seven birdies with three bogeys in his 68.
Shane Lowry had seven birdies and is the other man at six under, but Sergio Garcia had two late bogeys in a 73.
Scotland's Richie Ramsay shares third with Denmark's Thorbjorn Olesen, both players on five under.
McIlroy, who will play with Irishman Lowry on Friday as the second round is re-drawn in score order, has already secured the European Tour's Race to Dubai title for the second time in three years.
"I've been hitting the ball really well in practice and luckily that continued," he said. "I feel like I missed a lot of putt in the middle of the round but hopefully I can hole a few more and go even lower."