DP World Tour: Matthieu Pavon leads Italian Open by two shots

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Matthieu Pavon, a French professional golfer, currently holds a two-shot lead in the Italian Open following an impressive first-round score of 63 - marking his best-ever performance on the DP World Tour. The Frenchman turned in 29 blows on Thursday afternoon after reeling off six birdies on the front nine, before adding three more gains and one bogey down the stretch to reach eight under par. Pavon is looking to claim his first DP World Tour title this week, while a strong performance at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club could catch the eye of Europe's Ryder Cup captain Luke Donald, with this year's edition taking place at the Rome venue. Pavon was pleased with his performance, saying: "All in all it was just great playing. "Nothing bad to say about today. I was really, really solid off the tee, probably only missed two fairways today - and every time it was by a few inches. "The putting was amazing also. I dropped a lot of putts. I think I probably made nine putts on my front nine, which is quite funny. Everything was just excellent today." Maximilian Kieffer was alone in second on six under after making an eagle, five birdies and one bogey in his 65 late in the day. France's Julien Guerrier and China's Wu Ashun were another shot back on five under after posting 66s in the morning. Defending champion Robert MacIntyre opened with a 73, while Donald was one shot further back on three over par.

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