Phil Mickelson opened his season with an even-par 72 on Thursday in the Humana Challenge, leaving him nine shots behind the first-round leaders.

Recovering from flu-like symptoms, Mickelson had three birdies, a bogey and a double bogey at La Quinta Country Club -- one of three golf used in the pro-am event that he won in 2002 and 2004.

"My timing and rhythm was off a little bit," he said. "My putter was atrocious and I've been putting great, too. So, that was disappointing."

Former Cal golfer James Hahn, Jason Kokrak and Roberto Castro topped the leader board at 9-under 63. Hahn had nine birdies on PGA West's Arnold Palmer Private Course.

"It was a great day," Hahn said. "Chipped two in. Hadn't done that since I was nine."

Kokrak played La Quinta, while Castro was at PGA West's Jack Nicklaus Private Course.

Russell Henley, the Sony Open winner Sunday in his first start as a PGA Tour member, had a 64 on the Nicklaus course. He's 32 under in his first five rounds this year.

"It was a perfect day," Henley said. "The weather is perfect. The greens were true. So, it's just trying to stay patient and let the birdies come to me."

European Tour: With Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods struggling, fifth-ranked Justin Rose and unheralded Jamie Donaldson had 5-under 67s for a one-shot lead at the Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates) Championship.


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McIlroy, playing with new clubs following his multimillion dollar sponsorship deal with Nike, posted a 75. Woods shot an even-par 72 with four birdies and four bogeys.

Thorbjorn Olesen and Pablo Larrazabal shared third place.

McIllroy repeatedly missed fairways, including a shot on his 12th that hit a tree and ended up in a parking lot, leading to one of his two double bogeys. He insisted his difficulties had more to do with rusty strokes than the new equipment.

"I can learn from it and go into tomorrow and try and play a bit better," McIlroy said.

Woods, who was paired with McIlroy, finished a roller-coaster round at par after "grinding it out."

"I'm still right there," Woods said. "There's not a lot of guys going low out there.