Hansen makes fast start in Scottish Open

Four days after blowing his French Open chances with a closing 75 Denmark's Anders Hansen looked a different golfer in Inverness today.

Four days after blowing his French Open chances with a closing 75 Denmark's Anders Hansen looked a different golfer in Inverness today.

The 41-year-old birdied the first four holes on Castle Stuart's inward half and instantly opened up a three-stroke lead at the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open.

Hansen was joint leader with a round to go at Le Golf National on Sunday, but did not even finish in the top 10 and so is still seeking his first European Tour success since the 2009 Joburg Open.

Most of the early crowd were following world number one Luke Donald - also this week's defending champion - Ernie Els and Scot Richie Ramsay.

Els, his confidence boosted by being in contention at last month's US Open, was playing his first tournament since then and admitted to having some rust in his system - yet he was the first of the trio to grab a birdie.

That came on the 168-yard 11th, while his two playing partners began with two pars.

Nine strokes separated what Hansen and England's Sam Hutsby did in their opening four holes as the 23-year-old from Portsmouth kicked off with back-to-back bogeys, double-bogeyed the 306-yard third and then dropped another shot on the next to be five over and last by four.

After two rounds of 80 in Paris - he crashed out in joint last place - former world number three Paul Casey matched Donald's start and so did Padraig Harrington and Sunday's winner Marcel Siem.

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