DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- Rory McIlroy shot his lowest European Tour score in more than three years with a 9-under 63 Thursday to take a three-shot clubhouse lead in the first round of the Dubai Desert Classic. McIlroy grabbed an eagle and seven birdies in ideal scoring conditions on the Majlis Course, easily upstaging playing partner Tiger Woods, who was five shots back after a 68. It was McIlroys best European Tour round since a 63 on the opening day of the UBS Hong Kong Open in November 2010. It also displayed McIlroys renewed confidence in his game after struggling for much of 2013. He ended last year by winning the Australian Open and then finished joint runner-up in his first event of 2014 in nearby Abu Dhabi. "Today was another step up from Abu Dhabi as I controlled my irons better," McIlroy said. "You can see how well I am driving it that I am leaving myself a lot of wedges into the green, so thats going to help." McIlroy won his maiden European Tour title in Dubai in 2009. Woods made four birdies on his front nine but finished with nine straight pars. Still, it was a much better showing than his 79 last week at the Farmers Insurance Open, which matched his worst score on American soil and made him miss the 54-hole cut. He birdied three of the four par-fives, including the 10th hole after starting on the back nine. "Overall it was a pretty good score but maybe I could have gotten two more out of it," Woods said. "After going 0-for-12 on birdies on the par-fives last week, it was actually nice to make one at the first hole right out of the gate." Defending champion Stephen Gallacher of Scotland, who played alongside McIlroy and Woods, was tied for second with three other players. 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Known as an aggressive striker, Belfort (23-10) instead paced himself as the engaged in the early going and showed restraint by not overcommitting against the larger Rockhold (10-2). But when the opportunity presented itself, Belfort delivered an incredible spinning heel kick that landed flush on Rockholds chin and sent him toppling to the floor.TORONTO -- The Canadian mens rugby team will play the U.S. on June 21 in Sacramento, Calif., as part of the IRB Pacific Nations Cup. Canadas other game in the tournament -- against Japan on June 7 at Swangard Stadium in Burnaby, B.C. -- had been previously announced. The contest against the U.S. Eagles will be played at the new Cal Expo Multi-Use Sports Field. Canada is currently ranked 15th in the world, while Japan is No. 13 and the Americans are No. 18. The other Pacific Nations Cup pool features No. 8 Samoa, No. 11 Fiji and No. 12 Tonga. Samoa will host Tonga on June 7 before Fiji entertains Tonga on June 14 and Fiji faces visiting Samoa on June 21. The U.S. will host Japan at the Stub Hub Center in Los Angeles on June 14 in the other Pool B game. The Pool A winner will be crowned the Pacific Island conference champion while Pool B will compete for the Asia/Pacific conference title. "The Pacific Nations Cup is an excellent opportunity for all participating teams to play some tough, competitive test matches with just over a year to go until Ruggby World Cup 2015," Mark Egan, the International Rugby Boards head of competitions and performance, said in a statement Wednesday.dddddddddddd Canada will also host No. 10 Scotland at Torontos BMO Field on June 14. Canadian coach Kieran Crowley plans a trials match in B.C. a week before the first game in June so he can review the Canadian-based and overseas talent at his disposal. Domestic-based players will take part in the Canadian Rugby Championship in the late summer with Crowley selecting the cream of the crop to represent Canada in the Americas Rugby Championship in the fall. The Canadians will also have three test matches in November. Canada has already qualified for the 2015 World Cup, which opens in September 2015 in England. The Canadians will play in Pool D with No. 5 Ireland, No. 7 France, No. 14 Italy and No. 17 Romania. Fiji and Canada both finished with 3-1-0 records at the Pacific Nations Cup in 2013 but the Pacific Islanders placed first by virtue of more bonus points. The 2013 event was a basic round-robin format. 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