Koepka shoots 66 on comeback in Abu Dhabi
World number one Brooks Koepka shot a blemish-free 66 on his comeback and was two shots off the lead after the first round at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.
Koepka was playing in his first tournament since October, when he aggravated a knee injury, and the four-time major winner was able to quickly find his rhythm in the United Arab Emirates.
Having started with a birdie at the 10th, Koepka was four under at the turn before making further gains at the second and third.
The American was unable to pick up further strokes on his final six holes, though, and he ended the day two adrift of co-leaders Shaun Norris and Renato Paratore, both of whom shot eight-under 64s.
"It feels good to be back," Koepka told Sky Sports.
"I've missed the competition, obviously, and I played really solid.
"Missed a few putts there early if I really want to pick it apart but drove it really well, controlled the ball flight and controlled distances really well and that's what you have got to do out here."
While the closing stages of Koepka's round were solid rather than spectacular, Norris and Paratore both shot up the leaderboard by finishing with a flourish.
Norris picked up seven shots in nine holes from the eighth while Paratore carded four successive birdies to finish.
Italian Paratore, who has one previous European Tour win to his name, lost in a play-off at his most recent tournament in Mauritius while South African Norris has had nine top-10 finishes in his last 14 events worldwide.
Spanish duo Rafa Cabrera Bello and Sergio Garcia sat in the group at five under while Branden Grace, a winner in his native South Africa last week, was among those a stroke further back.