Three birdies in the closing six holes has given Matt Wallace a platform to try and build from as he seeks a strong finish to the European Tour season at the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.

The Moor Park Golf Club honorary member had been one-over-par through 11 holes in today's first round at Jumeirah Golf Estates but a birdie two at the 13th hole moved him back to level par, before back-to-back threes at 15 and 16 saw him finish the opening day in a share of 14th place on two-under.

The Dubai course holds fond memories for the 29-year-old after he finished in a tie for second in his first appearance at the season-ending event 12 months ago to end the 2018 season in 10th place in the Race to Dubai.

Wallace is on track to improve on that position in the season-long competition to determine Europe’s leading golfer, having travelled to Dubai in seventh place in the standings.

However, he does so having on the back of couple of below-par showings at this month’s two previous Rolex Series events, finishing in a share of 44th at last week’s Nedbank Golf Challenge following a tie for 50th at the Turkish Airlines Open.

Frenchman Mike Lorenzo-Vera set the first round pace with a superb nine-under-par 63, with Rory McIlroy only one shot further back in second following a 64.