Mickelson in early lead at Desert Classic

Phil Mickelson

Mickelson rolled in 10 birdies and an eagle en route to a 12-under 60 to become the first player in PGA Tour history to post three scores of 60 or better.

He remained two shots ahead by the close of proceedings - Australian challenger Curtis Luck rising into second with a round of 66 at the Nicklaus.

A day after matching his career-low score with 12-under 60 at La Quinta Country Club, Mickelson, 48, had a 68 on PGA West's Nicklaus Tournament Course to reach 16 under.

Prior to the round Mickelson had said on Twitter he was excited to start the season but was "a bit rusty".

"Sometimes you have days where it just clicks".

"I shot four (under) so I'll just have to come out tomorrow and shoot six or seven (under) to make up for it".

"You just have to keep firing on all cylinders and going after birdies because this is a course where there's going to be a lot of birdies", he said.

"It was kind of a lucky day for me in the sense that I did not feel sharp heading in", said Mickelson, who is in his 28th year on the PGA Tour.

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Phil Mickelson birdied four of his last five holes Friday to take a two-stroke lead into the weekend in his first event of the year. I haven't really had the intense practice sessions I would like.

Marino had a hole-in-one on the seventh hole at La Quinta in a 65.

The tournament is played over three venues - La Quinta, the Nicklaus Tournament Course and the host Stadium Course, which will stage Sunday's final round.

At the 165-yard par-3 17th, Straka hit a tee shot 162 yards at the green, setting himself up for the 24-foot putt for birdie.

The Desert Classic is the only PGA Tour event to yield two sub-60 rounds. Hadwin had a 66 at La Quinta, the course where he shot 59 two years ago.

He narrowly missed out on finishing 2018 as world No. 1 but reclaimed the ranking from Brooks Koepka last week after the American could only finish 24th at the Tournament of Champions in Hawaii.

Hadwin used seven birdies to move into third place and Marino, who is seeking his first victory, wielded a hole-in-one on the par-3 7th to climb the leaderboard.

Rose can expect stiff competition from Spain's defending champion Jon Rahm while two-time former victor Phil Mickelson is also in the field.

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