CHORLEY'S Nick Dougherty leads the British challenge at the Maybank Malaysian Open after a first round 66.

The Shaw Hill professional was one of the few players teeing off in the afternoon in Kuala Lumpur to make an impression on the top of the leaderboard after a strong finish to his round.

He bagged an eagle at the last hole to add to the four birdies he reeled off on the back nine, en route to his six-under-par round. It leaves him in joint fifth with Malaysia's Danny Chia and Australian Adam Blyth - and four shots off the overnight leader, South Korea's Noh Seung-Yol.

"It was good and I played really well," said the 26-year-old Dougherty. "To finish birdie-par-birdie-eagle always helps as well.

"I hit two great shots into the last and nearly holed my second as well so it was a very pleasing finish.

"I played better than I was scoring on the front nine but it paid me back over the last few holes."