Highlights from LIV Golf London day one at the Centurion Club, St Albans

Ian Poulter tees of the first green on day one of the inaugural LIV Golf Invitational and LIV Golf London event

Ian Poulter tees of the first green on day one of the inaugural LIV Golf Invitational and LIV Golf London event, held at the Centurion Club near St Albans - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

South African golfer Charl Schwartzel has taken an early lead in day one of the inaugural LIV Golf London event, which began at the Centurion Club near St Albans yesterday.

Schwartzel fired six birdies and an eagle in the round to land himself at the top of the leaderboard on five under par.

The 2011 Masters winner finished day one (June 9) four ahead of Dustin Johnson, world number 13 and the highest-ranked player in the tournament, and three-time Masters winner Phil Mickelson.

Phil Mickelson on the fourth green

Phil Mickelson on the fourth green - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

A flypast over the Centurion Club and St Albans city to mark the start of the LIV Golf London tournament

A flypast over the Centurion Club and St Albans city to mark the start of the LIV Golf London tournament - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

But despite Schwartzel's opening performance, the LIV tournament failed to shake off criticism that it is an upset in the golfing world.

The PGA Tour, which runs the US and Canadian Open championships, barred the golfers taking part in the eight-stage LIV tournament from its events.

Sergio Garcia plays a shot on the 16th green at the Centurion Club, St Albans

Sergio Garcia plays a shot on the 16th green at the Centurion Club, St Albans - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

Here are highlights from day one of LIV Golf London:

Shotgun tee off with Martin Kaymer taking the first birdie

The inaugural LIV Invitational began with tee off at the Centurion Club - between St Albans and Hemel Hempstead - at 2.15pm.

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The stakes are high - players are competing for their share of a $25 million prize pot in Hertfordshire, with the winner guaranteed to scoop $4m.

All 48 players, who are organised into 12 teams, teed off at the same time on different holes.

Lee Westwood on the fifth hole during day one of the LIV Golf London event

Lee Westwood on the fifth hole during day one of the LIV Golf London event - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

Amid the all-at-once action, former world number one Lee Westwood (Majesticks Golf Club) scored the first par.

Martin Kaymer (Cleeks GC) scored LIV's first ever birdie on the 15th hole, with a 7ft final shot.

On their first holes, Dustin Johnson (4 Aces GC) and Phil Mickelson (Hy Flyers GC) scored par.

Phil Mickelson attempts a shot in the rough on the third hole at the Centurion Club near St Albans

Phil Mickelson attempts a shot in the rough on the third hole at the Centurion Club near St Albans. Mickelson eventually finished one under. - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

Dustin Johnson tees off the first green on day one of the inaugural LIV Golf London event, held near St Albans

Dustin Johnson tees off the first green on day one of the inaugural LIV Golf London event, held at the Centurion Club near St Albans - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

Viraj Madappa scores first eagle

Iron Heads GC player Viraj Madappa scored the first ever eagle in a LIV event.

He rolled the ball in with a 10ft putt on the 13th hole.

Phachara Khongwatmai (Crushers GC) topped the leaderboard in the earlier stages of the round, dropping in the ranks towards the middle stages.

Oliver Fisher of Niblicks GC - which is currently in position 12 of 12 in the leaderboard - in the bunker on the 16th hole

Oliver Fisher of Niblicks GC - which is currently in position 12 of 12 in the leaderboard - in the bunker on the 16th hole - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

Hennie du Plessis on the 18th green before he finished the day at second position on the LIV Golf London leaderboard

Hennie du Plessis on the 18th green before he finished the day at second position on the LIV Golf London leaderboard - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

Day one leaderboard

Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson both finished the day with one under.

Charl Schwartzel (Stinger GC) took a late lead with an eagle at 6.30pm, securing his top-spot position.

Topping the individual leaderboard are:

  • Charl Schwartzel (Stinger GC) (-5)
  • Hennie Du Plessis (Stinger GC) (-4)
  • Scott Vincent (Smash GC) (-3)
  • Phachara Khongwatmai (Crushers GC) (-3)
South Africa's Louis Oosthuizen - a member of day one leaders Stinger GC - on the fifth hole at the Centurion Club

South Africa's Louis Oosthuizen - a member of day one leaders Stinger GC - on the fifth hole at the Centurion Club - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

Ian Poulter tees off the fifth green during day one at the LIV Golf London

Ian Poulter tees off the fifth green during day one at the LIV Golf London - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

Stinger GC tops the team leaderboard, with Phil Mickelson's Hy Flyers in second position, and Dustin Johnson's 4 Aces GC in fifth:

  • Stinger GC (-9)
  • Hy Flyers GC (-3)
  • Crushers GC (-3)
  • Majesticks GC (-2)
  • 4 Aces GC (-1)
  • Smash GC (E)
  • Torque GC (+1)
  • Iron Heads GC (+1)
  • Fireballs GC (+2)
  • Cleeks GC (+3)
  • Punch GC (+4)
  • Niblicks GC (+7)
America's Dustin Johnson tees off the fourth hole during day one of the LIV Golf London event in Hertfordshire

Dustin Johnson tees off the fourth hole during day one of the LIV Golf London event in Hertfordshire - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

London black cabs wait to ferry players between holes at the Centurion Club, St Albans

London black cabs wait to ferry players between holes at the Centurion Club, St Albans - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

PGA Tour suspends LIV Golf players

The long-established PGA Tour has suspended the memberships of golfers taking part in the LIV Golf London event near St Albans.

PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said any players competing at the Centurion Club without a proper event and media rights release will be barred from PGA Tour events.

He criticised talk of "money, money and more money" in the new LIV "super league".

Monahan said: "Players' participation in the Saudi Golf League/LIV Golf event is in violation of our tournament regulations."

He added: "These players have made their choice for their own financial-based reasons.

"They can’t demand the same PGA TOUR membership benefits, considerations, opportunities and platform as you.

"That expectation disrespects you, our fans and our partners.

"I am certain our fans and partners – who are surely tired of all this talk of money, money and more money – will continue to be entertained and compelled by the world-class competition you display each and every week, where there are true consequences for every shot you take and your rightful place in history whenever you reach that elusive winner’s circle."

A spokesperson for LIV responded, hailing in an era of "free agency" for golfers.

They said: "The announcement by the PGA Tour is vindictive and it deepens the divide between the Tour and its members.

"It's troubling that the Tour, an organisation dedicated to creating opportunities for golfers to play the game, is the entity blocking golfers from playing.

"This certainly is not the last word on this topic.

"The era of free agency is beginning as we are proud to have a full field of players joining us in London and beyond."

The suspension involves 17 players, but some of them - including Charl Schwartzel and Dustin Johnson - had resigned their membership before the PGA Tour released its statement.

Speaking to the press after day one at the Centurion Club, Ian Poulter (Majesticks GC) said he intends to appeal the suspension.

He said: "I’ve played a lot of tournaments all around the world, this event is no different.

"It’s a shame if they view this as something different." 

Ian Poulter, who wants to appeal his suspension from the PGA Tour for competing in the LIV Golf Invitational

Ian Poulter, who wants to appeal his suspension from the PGA Tour for competing in the LIV Golf Invitational - Credit: Steven Paston/PA

LIV Golf London day two schedule and live coverage

Friday, June 10 marks the second day (out of three) at LIV Golf London.

According to the event website, gates open for spectators at 11am, with a fanzone experience for on-site spectators.

Tee off is at 2pm, with live streams on Facebook and YouTube.

Après Golf events begin at 7pm.

Ian Poulter tees off the fifth green during day one at the LIV Golf London

Ian Poulter tees off the fifth green during day one at the LIV Golf London - Credit: Steven Paston/PA