The 37-year-old former Dunbar trainee pro shared the lead at the end of the opening day with Irishman Peter Lawrie after firing a six-under-par 66.
It was Drysdale’s lowest round by far at Wentworth and kept him on a high after his side’s 5-1 hammering of Capital rivals Hibs in last weekend’s Scottish Cup Final. Asked about that after making his flying start in the European Tour’s flagship event, he declared: “It was fantastic – it was just a pity they took the foot off the pedal in the last 20 minutes!”
Drysdale, who lives near Cockburnspath, had a ticket for the game but could see his preparations for this week being affected if he’d joined in the celebrations. “In the end, I didn’t actually go to the final,” he revealed. “I thought I would be professional and come down here early, although it did not work out that way as I was still in the pub for the Champions League final!”
Drysale, who finished yesterday’s round with a birdie at the last despite his second shot splashing into the water at the side of the green, added: “I am quite calm.”
Stephen Gallacher, a big Celtic fan, opened with a level-par 72 while Drysdale’s fellow Jambo David Patrick signed for a 77 on his debut in the event.
Gallacher, who finished fourth here two years ago, finished birdie-birdie, hitting the green at the par-5 last with a 7-iron for his second shot.
“I was able to take driver off the tee, something I wasn’t able to do with the old fairway,” he noted of changes to the hole.
“Two years ago, when I finished fourth, I was needing an eagle at the last but still had to take a 3-iron off the tee. There will be drama there now and that’s what they want.”
Edinburgh man Patrick, who is playing in the event for the first time, enjoyed his debut round despite running up three double-bogeys on the back nine. “I just hit two or three bad shots over four or five holes on a difficult golf course,” said the Tartan Tour player. “But it was a fabulous experience and I almost enjoyed the double bogeys.”