HONOLULU — Vijay Singh opened with 7-under 63 for a five-way share of the lead and a score just good enough to beat players in his age group at the Sony Open on Thursday.
Singh, who turns 53 on Sunday, posted his best score in 19 years playing Waialae Country Club. He was tied with Brandt Snedeker, Kevin Kisner, Ricky Barnes and Morgan Hoffmann after the first round of the first full-field PGA Tour event of the year.
Singh was among three players 50 or older who shot 66 or better. Fred Funk, who turns 60 this summer, made a late bid for the lead until a bogey on 16. He shot 65. Davis Love III, who won the Wyndham Championship in August at age 51, birdied his last hole for 66.
Si Woo Kim, Zach Johnson and Charles Howell III shot 64.
A victory would make Singh the oldest winner in tour history. He would be 18 days older than Sam Snead was when Snead won at Greensboro, N.C., in 1965. But Singh hasn't won since the Deutsche Bank Championship in 2008, and he has been around long enough to realize that a good start is nothing more than that.
"I've been playing really well," he said. "I just haven't produced the scores. … See what the next three days bring."
Singh said his body feels better than it has in years, which helps. He also credited rediscovering a book he has carried with him for the past 20 years.
"I haven't read it for the last 10 years," he said. "So I picked it up (Wednesday) and started reading a few things that I've been doing, and it's just a different mind-set. … That's the plan, to attack the golf course instead of just trying to put it in the fairway and (making) a good swing."
The name of the book?
"I can't tell you," he said. "I'd have to kill you." He laughed.
Diamond Resorts Invitational: Two-time Cy Young Award winner Bret Saberhagen scored 25 points to take a two-point lead in the modified Stableford event for celebrity athletes and entertainers at Windermere, near Orlando. Retired tennis pro Mardy Fish was second in the 65-person field. Former NHL star Mike Modano and former major-league player Phil Nevin were three points back.