Donald off to a flyer in Dubai

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LUKE Donald leads the European Tour’s season-ending DP World Tour Championship after opening the £6million event with a seven under par 65 yesterday in Dubai.

However, world No1 Rory McIlroy is only one stroke back and that after driving in the water on the long final hole and having to settle for a par there and an inward half of 31. The 34-year-old Donald packed his seven birdies into 10 holes from the fifth. He said: “That middle part I really swung the ball well and made a lot of putts - I felt like I couldn’t miss.

Worksop’s Lee Westwood is a shot further back after a 67, which left him in a tie for fifth place. And Sheffield’s Danny Willett, who has enjoyed a solid 2012 on the European Tour is handily place at one under par.