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Joost Luiten tied for the lead at KLM Open

Defending KLM Open champion Joost Luiten is tied for the lead after the first day of this year's event in Zandvoort.

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Luiten and Scotsman Jamie McLeary both shot five-under rounds of 65 at the European Tour tournament on Thursday to set the early pace.

McLeary only managed to get through 16 holes, though, before play was called off for bad light at the Kennemer Golf and Country Club.

Play was held up earlier in the day after Italian Fabrizio Zanotti was injured by an errant ball struck by Alexandre Kaleka.

Zanotti did not lose consciousness, but was rushed to hospital and fellow players Felipe Aguilar and Ricardo Gonzalez accompanied him " the trio all withdrawing as a result.

Luiten started on the back nine and was just one under with four holes to go.

The Dutchman caught fire later in the day, though, following up a birdie on the sixth with a long putt for eagle on the seventh.

He went close to making it two eagles in a row with a stunning tee shot on the eighth as another birdie followed.

"It is always nice to shoot a 65," Luiten told the European Tour's official website.

"I played well and didn't make any mistakes. That's the key on this course " keep the ball in play and take your chances.

"I thought if I made a couple of birdies it would be a nice round and the eagle on seven was a bonus, then I hit it stiff on eight and all of a sudden you are five under for the round.

"It's the first day so you just stay patient and don't make big mistakes and your chances will come, and they did."

Luiten " who beat Miguel Angel Jimenez in a play-off last year " is hoping to become the first player from the Netherlands to defend a title on the European Tour.

Frenchman Gary Stal and Italian pair Edoardo Molinari and Andrea Pavan are tied for third, one shot off the pace.

The 22-year-old Stal hit five birdies in an excellent round of 66.

A group of five players " Thomas Aiken, Estanislao Goya, Maximilian Kieffer, Daniel Im and Andy Sullivan " are tied for sixth at three under.

Italian Matteo Manassero leads the charge from those players at two under with four birdies in his final five holes helping the 21-year-old finish strongly.

A host of players did not finish their rounds but play will resume early at 8.08am (local time) for those still to finish.

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