Tiger Woods began his bid for the Open Championship with eight birdies in a round of 66, for a one-shot lead.
Australian Mark Hensby, in the top-five at the Masters and the US Open, took three putts at the last for a 67.
Retief Goosen opened with a solid 68 to share second with a host of players including British hope Luke Donald and Scottish amateur Eric Ramsay.
Jack Nicklaus, in his final Open, carded a three-over 75, while defending champion Todd Hamilton posted a 74.
UPDATES FROM THE COURSE (All times BST)
2151: The remaining players finally finish their rounds in the gathering gloom at St Andrews.
2046: Jean Van De Velde comes home in 77, his round not helped by a double-bogey six at the notorious Road Hole, the 17th.
2034: A birdie at the last brings flamboyant Spanish star Miguel Angel Jimenez home with a fine round of 69, two ahead of playing partner John Daly.
2008: Fred Couples finishes birdie-birdie for a round of 68, leaping up the field to tie for third place, two off the lead.
1950: Hensby's putt to tie the first day lead misses on the low side and he finishes with a par and a round of 67, one behind Woods.
1948: Graeme McDowell also has an eagle chance in the pleasant late evening sunshine but his effort drifts off short and right.
1947: The eagle attempt finishes well short, however.
1940: Hensby finds the front edge of the green at the last and he will have a putt for the lead.
1925: Garcia is unable to get up and down and he slips to two under.
1921: Hensby's putt for an unlikely three and a share of the lead at the 17th finishes on the lip and he remains at five under.
1918: Garcia's approach to the hole comes up short and leaves him with a long and difficult putt.
1915: Hensby gets as close as anyone on the 17th, running up to around 12 feet from the flag to set up another birdie chance.
1909: He pushes his putt for a par and it misses on the right, dropping him back to three under.
1906: Garcia is faced with a steeply breaking putt from the front of the 16th but he copes with it well and runs it up four feet from the hole.
1902: Hensby birdies the 15th to take sole possession of second, as Singh taps in for a birdie at the last to finish with a round of 69.
1901: The evergreen Fred Couples moves to three under with a birdie at the 13th.
1855: The powerful Fijian fades a drive onto the front edge of the par-four 18th.
1852: Singh holes his putt for a par to remain at two under, while Fredrik Jacobson is another who has to play backwards into another part of a bunker.
1849: Paul McGinley squeezes a birdie putt into the side door at the 15th and moves to two under.
1848: Singh's second at the 17th finishes on the thin strip of grass in the centre of the path and he lobs it up around six feet past.
1845: Garcia lags his 50 foot putt up to within a yard or so.
1843: Hensby has a putt to go five under but it finishes three feet shy.
1841: Having recorded a par-five at the 14th, Garcia creeps on to the front of the green at the 15th.
1832: Singh has to play backwards from the face of a greenside trap with the back of his sand wedge, then splashes out in conventional fashion to four feet.
1827: However, he finds a greenside trap with his second and from an awkward spot he can only splash out 25 feet from the flag.
1819: Garcia flirts with the Beardies, the group of bunkers at the 14th, but avoids the large collection of awaiting sand.
1817: Mickelson is pin high on the other side but from the light rough he judges his putt to perfection and it finishes six inches from the hole, for a closing birdie that results in a round of 74.
1814: Poulter, left with 53 yards to the hole from pin high on the last, opts for the putter but is barely able to reach the green.
1811: Singh finds the centre of the green from a difficult spot in the rough at the 15th.
1808: Garcia's par attempt stays above ground and he drops back to join the four under group.
1805: Immelman gets up and down from behind the Road Hole bunker and remains at four under, and Poulter also saves par from a similar place.
1803: Garcia's gargantuan putt from the double green at the 13th is a good 10 feet short, while Mickelson misses from seven feet to drop another shot at the 17th and slip to plus three.
1802: With the rain falling, Singh holes from in excess of 20 feet for an eagle at the 14th to move to three under.
1754: Hensby joins the four under group after a birdie at the 12th.
1753: Faldo's eagle putt at the last comes up a foot short but the birdie gives him a round of 74.
1750: Poulter holes out bravely to save par at the 16th and remain at two under.
1749: A superb escape from the sand from Webster finishes inches from the hole and he saves par.
1746: Despite racing his eagle chance eight feet past, Garcia holes the return to move into sole possession of second at five under.
1745: Daly holes from six feet for his third successive birdie, whil Clarke misses from two feet and finishes with a 73.
1744: Els finishes with a par to card a 74.
1743: Webster's approach to the 17th finds the Road Hole bunker.
1741: Poulter punches a low second into a deep greenside trap at the 16th, while Mickelson bids to recover from his triple bogey by finding the green in regulation.
1739: Clarke's putt for an eagle at the last comes up short.
1733: Mickelson holes out from two feet for a seven and drops to two over.
1732: Poulter recovers from a poor tee shot to birdie the 15th and reach two under.
1729: Mickelson, having a dreadful time at the par-four 15th, runs a putt eight feet past with his sixth shot.
1723: Big John Daly, in a large beige bodywarmer, holes from a yard for a birdie after a superb tee shot at the eighth and is one under.
1721: Garcia judges his birdie putt to perfection and moves to four under after 11.
1718: Tony Jacklin is driven back to the tee in a buggy after losing his ball at the 14th.
1717: Australian Mark Hensby is the third player to eagle the ninth, rolling one in from the apron.
1716: Singh's six-footer for a birdie horseshoes out.
1710: The stylish left-hander is able to two-putt for a par.
1709: Mickelson's fairground ride-style putt for an eagle at the 14th runs off a steep undulation and almost off the green at the back
1706: After a superb approach to six feet at the 10th, Garcia's putt just drifts away to the right at the death and he remains at three under.
1704: Ryder Cup captain Ian Woosnam is closest to the hole at the tricky par-three 11th, his tee shot finishing a few inches from the flag and putting him one under for the event.
1702: Immelman's four-iron from almost 250 yards runs through to the back of the green at the 14th.
1700: Webster's rollercoaster round continues with a birdie from four feet at the long 14th and he moves back to three under.
1657: Vijay Singh casually deposits a birdie from 15 feet at the 11th and moves to two under for the Championship.
1651: Garcia reaches three under after an eight foot birdie putt at the ninth hole.
1650: Paul McGinley is a whisker away with an eagle putt on the ninth but the birdie takes him to one under.
1648: Clarke rolls in a birdie putt at the long 14th to get back to level.
1647: A 12-foot putt from Immelman does everything but drop and he records his first bogey of the day to slip to three under.
1635: Webster's problems continue to mount with a double bogey at the 13th that leaves him back at two under.
1629: Poulter picks up his first birdie of the day and moves back to level after a huge, swinging putt from the apron at the 12th.
1622: Webster is able to play out of a fairway bunker despite another ball bizarrely landing alongside him in the sand.
1620: Garcia moves to two under after seven, rattling a birdie putt into the back of the cup.
1618: Simon Khan, fined for slow play recently, finishes with a birdie and returns a round of 69.
1613: Webster misses on the right for a birdie but secures a par after two successive dropped shots.
1604: Els taps in from a yard for another bogey and is one over.
1543: Garcia's eagle putt at the fifth looks certain to drop but it drifts across at the last moment and he has to settle for a birdie.
1539: Webster's par putt is a shade tentative and he drops back to take second place on his own at five under.
1538: Tino Schuster of germany wields the long putter to good effect and joins the ever-expanding group sharing second at four under.
1535: After eight pars Poulter three putts the ninth and drops his first shot of the Championship.
1534: Els bogeys the 11th after his first putt on the most exposed part of the course comes back down to his feet.
1527: Co-leader Webster finds the face of a deep bunker with his tee shot at the 10th.
1526: Mickelson launches a drive into the centre of the green at the 352-yard ninth.
1521: Steve Webster posts his second eagle to tie for the lead with Woods, chipping in from the rough around the ninth green for a two.
1517: Els keeps his round together with a long downhill putt for a par at the 10th.
1512: Ramsay holes a huge putt from the back of the 18th green and claims a share of second place with a superb opening round of 68.
1505: Immelman leaves a birdie putt from off the green on the lip and remains at three under.
1500: Bernhard Langer, a late entry to the Championship, finishes with three birdies in the last four holes to end on one under.
1450: The wind is increasing and starting to swirl, but Scott Verplank is undaunted as he birdies the 17th - the first at the troublesome par-four Road Hole - to move to three under.
1430: Clarke sinks a putt from the edge of the seventh green and gets into red figures at one under.
1425: Amateur Eric Ramsay from Scotland holes a mammoth putt at the 15th and moves to three under.
1420: Sergio Garcia, in bright yellow shirt and cap, rattles in a 20-foot putt for a birdie on the opening green.
1416: Adam Scott birdies his second hole in succession to reach three under after 15 holes.
1414: Els misses a birdie chance on the sixth.
1403: Montgomerie takes three putts from the edge of the fairway and finishes with a 71, while Toms also fails to make a birdie after getting close to the green with his drive and returns a 74.
1402: Els misses from four feet and drops a shot at the par-five fifth.
1353: Montgomerie, having saved par successfully on the 17th, drives pin high at the par-four 18th.
1352: O'Meara misses a short birdie chance on the final green and finishes with a 71, but Campbell records his fourth birdie in five holes and returns a round of 69.
1348: Lawrie finishes the 17th with a six.
1346: A marvellous escape from Montgomerie gives him a a six-foot chance for par, while David Toms, at three under, opts to putt a three wood from a similar place and fails to clear the grass bank.
1341: Montgomerie is another to trickle onto the road to the right of the 17th green, but Lawrie, playimg his fourth after driving out of bounds, is able to hold on to the cut surface.
1339: US Open champion Michael Campbell is unable to hole from 15 feet and drops a shot at the 17th, dropping back to two under.
1336: Els calmly knocks in his second successive birdie with a 10-foot effprt at the fourth.
1331: Former Paul Lawrie finds the hotel with his tee shot at the infamous Road Hole, the 17th.
1328: By contrast Trevor Immelman is the first player this year to birdie both opening holes.
1327: Poulter watches a second birdie chance slip by and he has to settle for a par.
1316: A smooth two putt gives Woods a closing birdie and a round of 66.
1315: A well judged birdie effort from Jose Maria Olazabal drops into the cup and gives the Spaniard a round of 68.
1314: Playing partner Els also sinks a long putt to get to minus one.
1313: Darren Clarke rolls in a long birdie putt at the third to move to one under.
1305: Woods elects to use a three wood at the final hole and his drive winds its way up just short of the green.
1303: Allenby, in second place not so long ago, cards a second double bogey to slip back to one under.
1301: A safe two-putt from the back of the 17th gives Woods a par four and he stays one ahead.
1300: Ian Poulter, resplendent in lilac trousers with the image of the Claret Jug and all the names of previous Open winners embroidered on each leg, finds the centre of the fairway with his opening tee shot.
1258: Nick Faldo has to play his second shot at the second from a path, and his ball bounds to the back of the green.
1255: Montgomerie leaves an eagle chance a foot short at the 14th.
1240: His long putt races by the edge of the hole and he drops back to five under, only one ahead now.
1238: Woods has to play backward out of a deep bunker at the 16th.
1235: Nicklaus taps in from close range for a par at the closing hole to begin his final Open Championship with a round of 75.
1228: Woods misses his short birdie putt at the 15th and stays two ahead at six under.
1227: A warm ovation for Nicklaus as he strides up the final fairway.
1225: Ernie Els begins his campaign by positioning an iron safely into the middle of the first fairway.
1222: An imperious pitch from Woods finishes three feet from the hole at the 15th.
1214: Nicklaus runs just through the green at the 17th, Watson runs off the cut surface to find the road, but Donald hits one of the shots of the day and is pin high some 14 feet from the flag.
1209: Woods takes three from the edge of the long 14th and has to settle for a par-five, to remain at six under.
1200: The players observe a silence to remember the victims of last week's bombings in London.
1148: Peter Lonard eagles the 14th, having double-bogeyed the previous hole, and moves back to two under.
1141: Woods misses from around 15 feet to drop his first shot but at six under he is two clear of the field.
1140: Goosen holes from five feet at the treacherous 17th to remain at three under.
1130: Nicklaus misses a short birdie chance at the 14th and remains at three over, but playing partner Donald holes and moves into second spot.
1128: O'Meara moves into a tie for second with a mammoth birdie putt at the 10th
1127: A rare moment of fallibility as Woods puts his iron tee shot into the middle Coffins bunker.
1124: Woods retains his three shot cushion by holing out for yet another birdie.
1122: Playing partner Robert Allenby claims sole possession of second place after rattling in a birdie putt.
1119: Another piece of invention with his approach to the 12th sets up an seven-foot birdie chance for Woods.
1107: Woods rolls in a stunning downhill putt that breaks sharply into the centre of the cup and takes him three ahead at six under.
1103: Goosen has a good chance to move within one of the lead but his six-foot attempt misses on the low side.
1101: Montgomerie moves into red figures with a 10-foot birdie putt at the seventh.
1059: Joe Durant's nightmare first round comes to a close with his only birdie of the day. Unfortunately, the two double bogeys and four bogeys that went before leave him on eight over.
1053: Tiger Woods is in scintillating form. Another birdie at the 10th gives him a two-shot lead.
1050: Sandy Lyle receives a warm round of applause from the crowd on the 18th as he completes a two-over round of 74.
1043: Goosen's eagle putt at the 13th slips past the hole but he still recovers one shot to move to three under.
1041: Tiger Woods is in ominously good form. The world number one takes the lead on his own for the first time with a birdie at the ninth.
1038: Retief Goosen loses the lead with a double bogey at the 13th but has an eagle putt to make an immediate recovery at the next.
1037: Jack Nicklaus is annoyed with himself as he three-putts the 11th to slip to one over.
1026: Tiger Woods, who famously avoided any sand in his win at St Andrews five years ago, finally finds a bunker but coolly splashes out to six feet and birdies the seventh.
1016: England's Simon Dyson returns to the clubhouse after a two-under-par 70, matched by playing partner Mark Calcavecchia, as the first group finishes in double-quick time.
1013: Retief Goosen, playing with the wind on the back nine, birdies the 12th and leads on his own for the first time today.
1000: Luke Donald seems to be inspired by playing alongside Open legend Jack Nicklaus. The Englishman joins the leaders on three under with a birdie at the ninth.
0943: But Woods' playing partner Robert Allenby birdies the same hole and moves to three under as Retief Goosen also picks up a shot on the 10th to join him in the lead.
0940: Playing into a light south-westerly wind, Tiger Woods birdies the fifth to join the leaders on two under.
0920: Colin Montgomerie salvages a bogey at the first after putting his tee shot into the burn.
0917: A superb putt at the fourth gives Tiger Woods his first birdie of the day. The world number one is being overshadowed by playing partner Robert Allenby at the moment. The Australian shares the lead on two under.
0909: Colin Montgomerie's Open starts badly. The Scot sees his tee shot at the first roll agonisingly on into the burn.
0906: A birdie at the fifth earns England's Luke Donald, playing alongside Jack Nicklaus, a share of the lead.
0853: Tiger Woods continues his solid start with a par on the second hole.
0846: A bogey at the eighth sees Scottish amateur Lloyd Saltman lose his place at the top of the Open leaderboard.
0845: Defending champion Todd Hamilton is still to recover the shot he dropped at the second. The American is one over after five.
0837: Jack Nicklaus pars the third to stay on level par, but playing partner Luke Donald holes a birdie to move to one under.
0831: Tiger Woods sees his 10-foot putt for birdie on the first skid past the hole but he easily makes par.
0826: England's Brian Davis, who won a late invite, is enduring an awful start. He is three over after three holes.
0820: Tiger Woods, favourite for the title, steps away from his tee shot at the first as a bird flies across his line of vision, but it fails to disturb the world number one and he drives straight down the middle.
0800: Before the Open began, Jack Nicklaus said his main aim was to make the cut at St Andrews. A birdie at the first hole is the ideal start. Playing partner Tom Watson is also off to a flyer.
0757: There is plenty for the home fans to cheer when Sandy Lyle moves to one under after a birdie at the par-five fifth. It's currently a five-way tie for the lead, with Mark Calcavecchia, Rich Beem, Retief Goosen and Tim Clark also on one under.
0747: Jack Nicklaus earns a decent reception from the early crowds as he gets his last-ever Open campaign under way. But Luke Donald arguably receives more applause when he steps up to the tee. Mark Calcavecchia, Open champion in 1989, and former USPGA champion Rich Beem top the leaderboard on one under.
0724: Defending champion Todd Hamilton, who has failed to reproduce the form that won him the title 12 months ago, will feel a lot happier after hitting a solid drive off the first tee. He goes on to make par. But it's a terrible start for Britain's Lee Westwood, who double bogeys the first after finding the Swilcan Burn.
0658: Mark Calcavecchia's good start is quickly undone when he bogies the second hole to fall back to level par. Simon Dyson and Rory Sabbatini also drop shots to slip to one over.
0642: Mark Calcavecchia records the first birdie of the tournament, holing from six feet after landing his approach between the Swilcan Burn and the flag.
0630: Yorkshireman Simon Dyson gets the 134th Open Championship under way with a drive that comfortably finds the fairway on the par-four first. Playing partners Rory Sabbatini and former winner Mark Calcavecchia also avoid the rough but opt for five-woods instead of an iron off the tee.