The European Tour has now moved to the sub-continent after the three-event Desert Swing and a low-key field lined up on Thursday at the DLF Golf and Country Club in Delhi for the event co-sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours.
With none of the top stars in the field there is a chance for some of the lesser lights to shine and the top two are hardly household names.
But they both put in solid performances on Thursday, with Canizares carding seven birdies and just one bogey and Whiteford signing for an identical score with four consecutive birdies from the 10th to the 14th.
Italian Federico Colombo sits in third on five-under par, while a group of six players, including Gregory Havret and pre-tournament favourite Jamie Donaldson are a shot further back.
Indian star Jeev Milkha Singh is in a group of nine players back on three-under, while Paul McGinley and Rhys Davies sit on -2 after the first 18 holes.
John Daly's recent resurgence appears to have hit the buffers as he carded a seven-over par 79 and has little chance of making the cut, with five bogeys and a triple-bogey eight at the 14th hindering his progress.
With so many top stars missing there is every chance that someone may come from the pack to challenge over the weekend and anyone within eight shots of the leader could still have a say in proceedings.