Joaquin Niemann is part of a three-way tie for the lead after the opening round of the Sony Open in Hawaii.

The Chilean carded an eight-under 62 at the Waialae Country Club on Thursday to lead alongside Peter Malnati and Jason Kokrak.

Coming off a play-off loss to Harris English at the Tournament of Champions, Niemann's fine start to 2021 continued.

The 22-year-old made seven birdies, a bogey and an eagle, the latter coming with a chip in at the 18th.

Kokrak produced a bogey-free opening round, while Malnati mixed nine birdies with one bogey.

At the 17th, Kokrak almost produced a hole-in-one, only to see his shot lip out as he was forced to settle for a birdie.

Vaughn Taylor, Jim Herman, Aaron Baddeley, Patton Kizzire, Daniel Berger and Kim Si-woo are two shots adrift of the leaders.

The champion in 2018, Kizzire made a 45-foot eagle putt from off the green at the ninth, while Baddeley – runner-up in 2003 – is also in contention.

A group of 13 players are at five under, including last year's runner-up Brendan Steele, 2014 runner-up Chris Kirk and 2012 U.S. Open champion Webb Simpson.

Defending champion Cameron Smith opened with a three-under 67 to be in a tie for 40th.

Jason Kokrak celebrated a maiden PGA Tour title after winning The CJ Cup at Shadow Creek by two strokes on Sunday.

Kokrak carded an eight-under-par 64 to beat fellow American Xander Schauffele to the title in Las Vegas.

The 35-year-old Kokrak was flawless in the final round, holing eight birdies to finish 20 under for the tournament, including four in a row from the fifth to the eighth.

Kokrak – in his 233rd career start on the PGA Tour – made 14 putts of 10 feet or more during the event – a career-high in a Tour tournament.

Schauffele, who was seeking his fifth PGA Tour crown, posted a fourth-round 66 to earn the runners-up cheque.

After shooting a 74 on the penultimate day, Schauffele responded with seven birdies and just one bogey as he backed up his fifth-place finish at the U.S. Open.

Tyrrell Hatton (65) and overnight leader Russell Henley (70) closed the tournament tied for third at 17 under, while Talor Gooch (68) was a shot further back.

Defending champion Justin Thomas' bid for a third CJ Cup title ended in a share of 12th, 12 strokes adrift of Kokrak.

Four-time major winner Rory McIlroy recorded a 74 as he fell 11 positions to six under – a shot better off than Brooks Koepka.

Koepka – playing for the first time following a two-month injury layoff due to hip and knee issues which forced him to miss the FedEx Cup play-offs and U.S. Open – posted a one-over-par 73.

Former world number one Jordan Spieth's (67) second consecutive round in the 60s earned a share of 38th but his struggles continue as he still searches for his first triumph since 2017.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.