SSP Chawrasia holds a one-stroke lead over his young Indian compatriot Shubhankar Sharma and Matt Fitzpatrick after the first round of the Hong Kong Open, which marks the start of the 2018 European Tour season.
Teeing off on the 10th hole in Fanling on Thursday, Chawrasia sunk four birdies and went bogey free to go out in 32.
He gave one shot back at the par-three fifth, but two more birdies helped the four-time European Tour winner to a five-under 65.
Chawrasia's last victory came at the Hero Indian Open in March but he has managed to finish in the top 10 in his last two events on the Asian Tour.
Sharma, 21, had six birdies and two bogeys, the same return as Englishman Fitzpatrick, to sit one shot back on four under.
There are seven players tied for fourth at three under, including 2014 Ryder Cup winner Jamie Donaldson of Wales.
Tommy Fleetwood, back in action after beating Justin Rose to the Race to Dubai title at the DP World Tour Championship last weekend, holds a share of 11th with his fellow Englishman, who won this event in 2015, and six other players.
The 2016 winner, Australia's Sam Brazel, and Masters champions Sergio Garcia, are among those tied for 19th at one under.