South Africa's Justin Walters admitted he was "ecstatic" following an opening 67 which gave him a share of the lead after a windswept opening day of the Qatar Masters.
Walters defied the testing conditions to fire five birdies and no bogeys in a flawless round at Doha Golf Club and join Spain's Adri Arnaus on five-under par at the European Tour event.
South Australia's Nick Cullen carded a three-under round of 69 to sit among a crop of players tied for 10th.
Compatriot Lucas Herbert was on the same score on the 17th hole when play was suspended for the day, to resume at 7:45am local time on Friday, while fellow Victorian Deyen Lawson is one shot further back.
West Australian rookie Min Woo Lee, 20, shot a three-over-par 74 with Scott Hend finished on four over.
"I putted really well and my short game was really good today," front man Walters said. "I haven't played that well, even in calmer conditions, in a while so it's surprising and very welcome."
RIGHT: Arnaus (pictured) shares the lead with Walters after the opening round of the Qatar Masters. PHOTO: Warren Little/Getty Images.
Arnaus – who finished second on the Challenge Tour last year to graduate to the European Tour – and Walters enjoy a one-shot lead over a seven-strong group, which includes: South Africans Justin Harding and George Coetzee, Scotland's Richie Ramsay and Welshman Bradley Dredge.
Ramsay started his round with an eagle on the 10th – his opening hole of the day – and reached five-under par after 10 holes, only to drop shots on the 7th and 8th before a closing birdie on the 9th.
Oman Open winner Kurt Kitayama, who is seeking a third European Tour victory in his last 10 starts, is part of a 19-strong group on three-under par after an opening 69.