Simon Dyson has a share of the lead with Alvaro Quiros after the opening round of the Volvo China Open at the Genzon Golf Club in Shenzhen.
Both players carded a round of five-under-par (67) as they go in search of their first European Tour win since 2011.
Dyson, whose last tournament success came in the 2011 KLM Open, carded three birdies on both the front and back nine - a bogey on the first was the only blot on the Brit's scorecard.
Two birdies on the opening two holes for Quiros gave the Spaniard a superb start to the tournament and the 31-year-old built on that, adding an eagle at the par-five 13th and two further birdies, while dropping one shot at the 10th.
Quiros was happy with his start and believes it shows he is steadily improving. He said: "It was a good round of golf.
"It was a bit of a shame on the last par five because I was half a metre away from having a great chance to make another eagle. My game is improving. You can't see it yet on the rankings but I have been playing better."
Five players failed to finish their rounds as fading light meant play was suspended and the leaders do not have much breathing space heading into Friday's second round, with Dyson's fellow Englishmen David Hornsey and Tyrrell Hatton just a shot adrift alongside defending champion Brett Rumford and Spaniard Adrian Otaegui.
World No 3 Henrik Stenson can overhaul Tiger Woods at the top of the rankings with victory in Shenzen and he started steadily to finish his opening round on one-under par, four shots off the lead, while other big names Jason Dufner and Ian Poulter had differing days.
American Dufner, ranked 17th in the world, bogeyed three on the back nine to end one over par.
Meanwhile, Poulter is tied for ninth on three under par alongside the likes of Peter Uihlein, Richie Ramsay, Michael Hoey and France's Raphael Jacquelin who led the tournament on six-under before making a quadruple-bogey eight at the 15th.