World number one Dustin Johnson in six-way tie for lead at Players Championship

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Six players, including world number one Dustin Johnson, hold a share of the lead after the first round of the Players Championship.

Johnson scored five birdies before the turn to card a six-under 66 in a bogey-free round.

He is joined at the top of the leaderboard by Patrick Cantlay, Chesson Hadley, Matt Kuchar, Alex Noren and Webb Simpson.

Defending champion Kim Si-Woo is a shot behind with Jhonnatan Vegas, while Justin Rose finished two shots off the lead with a four-under 68.

Tommy Fleetwood is a further shot back on three-under, while Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy finished the day on one-under.

Tiger Woods eagled the par-five ninth to finish on level par with England’s Ross Fisher and Scotland’s Martin Laird.

Johnson’s position as world number one is under threat this week from Justin Thomas, Jon Rahm, Jordan Spieth and Rose and he hopes that posting his lowest score ever at TPC Sawgrass to open the tournament will help him hold on to the top ranking.

“My expectation is the same for every tournament. I want to play well and put myself in a position to have a chance to win on Sunday,” Johnson told reporters.

“Justin has been pretty close to me for a while.

“Every week I know there’s a chance someone can pass me. I definitely want to stay there, but if someone passes me it’s not going to change anything, I’m still going to go back the next week and try to get it back.

“It was a big deal to get there and it’s a big deal to stay there. I like being number one so I want to stay there.”

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