Written by
Bryan Mullen
Oct 13 2023
DJ LIV Golf Jeddah R1

It couldn’t have gone much better for Dustin Johnson on Friday. For him and his team.

The captain for 4Aces Golf Club shot a 4-under 66 in Round 1 at LIV Golf Jeddah presented by ROSHIN and stands just one stroke shy of Ripper Golf Club’s Marc Leishman entering the weekend.

Johnson was scorching hot on the front nine when he made four birdies in a five-hole stretch. He added another birdie on the first but countered it with a bogey on the par-5 fourth hole. Johnson carried his recent spectacular play into Jeddah after shooting 6-under 65 at LIV Golf Chicago.

“I just hit nice shots,” said Johnson, who tied for third in putting (1.44) on Friday. “I holed a couple 6-footers, maybe two 10-footers, so I was giving myself really good looks.”

His strong start in Jeddah shouldn’t come as a surprise. Johnson has four top-10 finishes in his last seven events, including a win at LIV Golf Tulsa, and finished 10th in Chicago.

Johnson has won at Royal Greens Golf and Country Club before. He claimed the Saudi International title in 2021.

“I enjoy coming back and playing here,” Johnson said. “The course suits my eye. I feel like I play it well. Yeah, I like playing here.”

The regular season concludes this week, and with it so does the race for the individual championship. If Johnson continues his strong scoring, he has a chance to grab the third-place bonus individual spot. The situation is simple: Johnson needs to win this week or have Bryson DeChambeau finish no better than 15th.

“I want to have a really good week this week,” Johnson said. “This is a big event. There's a lot on the line. I could sneak into that third spot if I win this week maybe, which would be nice, too. I'm going to go out and try to play as best I can.”

It was also a bright day for the team. 4Aces GC, which has two team wins this year, entered the week leading the season-long team standings with 188 points and leads Crushers Golf Club by 10 points. 4Aces GC has already clinched a quarterfinal bye for next week’s Team Championship in Miami and is looking to secure the No. 1 seed for the second straight year.

“Obviously we won last year and we're in first again this year going in,” Johnson said about his team’s standing. “We'll see after this week. But if we have a good week here, we'll still be in first starting Miami. You want to play well and kind of have everybody firing on all cylinders going into next week because it's a really big week.”