‘Perfect’ start pleases Rose

Rose, making his 250th European Tour appearances, hit four birdies on his way to a four-under 68 ??? three shots off early leader Oliver Fisher.

The former US Open champion made a sluggish start to last week???s Desert Swing opener in Abu Dhabi with an opening round 73, but was far more pleased with his display in Doha.

“It’s nice to be somewhere in contention and it’s a score on which to build for the rest of the week,??? the world No 5 said. ???It???s the perfect type of start really.”

???I didn???t do a ton of work over the Christmas period so paid for that early last week, but I???m beginning now to find my momentum, find my feels and am beginning to hit the ball a bit better round by round.

???I haven???t really made a putt yet, although I???m stroking the ball quite well so I???ve just got to be patient with that side of my game. My short game feels sharp which is good – no doubt the long game will come around.???

The strong breeze at Doha GC caused some players problems during the Pro-AM events earlier in the week, but Rose admits conditions weren???t as challenging for the opening round.

???It wasn???t strong, but it still was enough to be taking 20-25 yards off iron shots,??? Rose added. ???I was hitting eight-irons from 140 (yards) when I???d normally be hitting an eight-iron from 165, so it was still enough to make you really think and be quite precise with your shot selection.

???A couple of times you played for the wind down-breeze and sometimes it knocked the ball out of the skies, so it was enough to keep us on our toes, but it wasn???t that heavy breeze that makes it uncontrollable.

???I think if you played well you could make a good score, as the leaderboard shows.???

Joining Rose on four-under was playing partner Stephen Gallacher, who hit back-to-back birdies on the last two holes to stay in contention.

Gallacher hasn???t featured on the tour since a disappointing display at last month???s Nedbank Golf Challenge, but was also happy with the start he has made.

???No bogeys in my first round since early December, so it???s good to get off to a good start,??? the Scot told European Tour radio. ???You???re on your toes with certain pins whether to attack or not, but the course is great.

???We (Gallacher, Rose and Charl Schwartzel) played a good game today and we were all feeding off each other.??