(CNN) -- Australian rookie James Nitties and American journeyman Ken Duke share the lead after the first round of the Bryon Nelson Championship in Texas after five-under-par 65s.
Duke acknowledges the gallery after holing out on the 18th green in Texas.
Nitties, who came through qualifying school last year to earn his card, finished with a tremendous flourish of four straight birdies on the TPC Four Seasons Resort course at Las Colinas.
Duke made his charge with three successive birdies from the ninth to share the lead for only the second time in a PGA Tour event.
"I was very consistent with my putting today, and that's been kind of holding me back," the 40-year-old told the official PGA Tour Web site www.pgatour.com.
"I haven't been making those 10- and 12- and 15-foot putts. I felt really good today with the putter, and it's good to see a few go in early, and it helps your confidence. You just go from there."
A four-strong group of Brad Adamonis, Scott McCarron, Charles Howell and Canadian Mike Weir are one shot back on 66.
Defending champion Adam Scott started with a pair of bogeys and went on to a one-over 71.
World number nine Vijay Singh, the highest-ranked player in the tournament after the withdrawal of Phil Mickelson, carded a 70.
Mickelson is taking an indefinite break from golf after his wife Amy was diagnosed with breast cancer.
On the LPGA Tour, Karine Icher of France and South Korean Hee Young Park share the lead after the first round of the Corning Classic.
The pair shot eight-under 64s in the final edition of the tournament in New York State.
Minea Blomqvist of Finland, Sandra Gal of Germany, and South Koreans Sarah Lee, Soo-Yun Kang,and Hee-Won Han were a shot back with Paula Creamer in group at six-under.