Irish Open. Ilonen Leads in Ireland. June 19 2014

dragon logo dark Mikko Ilonen leads in Ireland at the Irish open at the Fota Island Resort. Mikko Ilonen  (Getty Images) Mikko Ilonen / Getty Images Mikko carded a course record -7 under par 64 at Fota Island Resort to establish a two shot lead after the first round of the Irish Open. He recorded eight birdies and one bogey, and said patience was the key; “It was a slow start really. The first sort of four or five holes I felt like I can't get anything going, but I stayed patient and then the birdies kept coming. In the end I managed to hit a couple of good putts which was nice.” There are three players tied in third position at -5 under par following their opening rounds of 66. Marcel Siem, Robert Karlsson and Magnus A Carlsson sharing. Robert really enjoyed his day; "It was nice, I'm very, very happy. I worked quite hard when I've been at home since the Nordea Masters, so it's been nice to keep it going. I've done a bit of work with my coach and things are coming together quite nicely. The long game was very, very good today." Graeme McDowell is back in a tie for 9th place in the log jam at -3 under par, while three-time major winner Padraig Harrington returned a -2 under par score of 69, which was matched by the defending champion Paul Casey. Rory McIlroy slumped to an opening round of +3 over par 74, and will have to pay really well tomorrow if he is to make the cut; "I still drove the ball great and got in the positions that you need to, but short-sided myself a couple of times, hit a couple of loose shots with my wedges and could not get a putt to drop." "I was pretty sloppy with the scoring clubs so I might head to the range this afternoon to work on those. I need to do better tomorrow to be here for the weekend."