Saturday, Jun 06th

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Stenson scores one for the 'old wave' at Tour Championship

golfATLANTA-- Henrik Stenson stole the spotlight from the young guns on Thursday, firing a seven-under-par 63 to set the pace after the first round of the season-ending Tour Championship.
  With Jason Day, 27, reigning as world number one with four wins in his last six events, 22-year-old Jordan Spieth holding the Masters and U.S. Open crowns and four-times major winner Rory McIlroy still just 26, the new wave is all the rage.
  "It feels good to be part of that wave," deadpanned the 39-year-old Stenson, drawing laughs from the press corps.
  "I guess we're not older than what we feel, right? So I don't feel a day over 38. So it's all good."
  Stenson has not won any tournaments this year and has never won a major but he has certainly done some big winning in his career.
  Two years ago, he won the Tour Championship to clinch the FedExCup playoffs title and claim its $10 million bonus prize.
  He followed that by closing with a 64 for a 25-under total and six-shot triumph in the European Tour's DP World Tour Championship that also won him the 2013 Race to Dubai jackpot.
  Stenson said he still feels young.
  "Of course, I want to try and stay competitive as long as I can and I'm working hard to make sure that happens," he said.
  "So, yeah, it gives satisfaction when you're on top of the leaderboard in any tournament, and yeah it's been a lot of Jason and Jordan and Rickie (Fowler) and Rory, so of course it's good to get a good start and hopefully we can progress from here on."
  Stenson said he works hard on his fitness.
  "I got a few little niggles. When you reach my age and you hit however many millions of golf balls I've done over the years, the body definitely feels it," he said.
  "But I'm trying to stay in good shape and I've had great help from my trainer and physio, Cornell. We worked together for three years now and I would say I'm in as good shape as I've ever been."
  Having a smart strategy around the East Lake course, where the Bermuda rough can throw off distance control of approach shot, can also make a big difference.
  "Hitting fairways is definitely crucial and I feel like I gave myself the best chances with three-wood and four-wood on a lot of these holes," said the Swede, who did not hit a single driver.
  "And you definitely would rather take a six-iron off the fairway than an eight-iron out of this rough."