Jason Day opens up three-stroke lead in search of first PGA Tour win since 2018

By Sports Desk May 06, 2022

Jason Day will head into the weekend at the Wells Fargo Championship as a strong favourite after extending his first-round lead to three strokes in Friday's action.

After posting a 63 in much friendlier Thursday conditions, Day was solid again, birdieing two of his first three holes, and was four under through 13. 

After a bogey on 14 and 17, he ended his day on the right foot with a birdie on 18 for a three-under 67, sitting at 10 under through two rounds.

Day, who has not won a PGA Tour event since 2018, told the media after stepping off the 18th green that he is excited to be back in this position after previously spending 51 weeks as the world number one before a number of injuries.

"I'm looking forward to it – it's nice to be back in the mix, nice to be leading," he said. "It's still two more days left, so I can't get too far ahead of myself.

"I mean, not many times you see this hair (after being forced to play without a hat due to the rain), but hopefully this weather can kind of go away and we can have hats on for the weekend.

"When you have conditions like this, it's really hard to commit to a shot because you're going in there and you're doing it kind of a lot quicker than your normal pre-shot routine.

"You have to force yourself to hit the shot and trust that."

Max Homa has a hold of outright second at seven under after posting a 66 – tied for the second-best round of the day. Also shooting 66 was Luke List, who drove the green on the par-four 14th hole to putt in for eagle, flying up the leaderboard into a tie for third at six under.

One shot further back at five under is a small group highlighted by Keegan Bradley, who had the round of the day with seven birdies and two bogeys for his 65.

A strong international contingent is in a tie for 10th at four under, with English duo Tyrrell Hatton and Matt Fitzpatrick, as well as India's Anirban Lahiri and Slovakia's Rory Sabbatini.

Abraham Ancer is part of the group at three under, while some big names are a further shot back, including Tony Finau, Sergio Garcia, Rickie Fowler and Camilo Villegas.

Rory McIlroy, Corey Conners and Matt Kuchar will live to see the weekend after finishing right on the cut line at even par, while Aaron Rai was not so lucky, going from a bogey-free 65 on Thursday to a birdie-free 76, missing the cut at one over.

Also missing the cut was Charl Schwartzel, Francesco Molinari, Marc Leishman and Webb Simpson.

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    Chun In-gee shot a three-under 69 on Friday to extend her leading score at the Women's PGA Championship to 11 under – six strokes better than anyone else through two rounds.

    The South Korean, who is a two-time major winner, led by five strokes after the first round, and extended that by one more with five birdies and two bogeys in her second trip around the course. In doing so, she is the only player to shoot both rounds in the 60s.

    Leading the chasing pack at five under is Australian Lydia Ko and American Jennifer Kupcho, with Ko's 67 tying for Friday's round of the day along with Lexi Thompson.

    Thompson sits in a tie for ninth at three under, along with recent U.S. Open winner Minjee Lee and China's Xiyu Lin.

    Heading into the weekend there are 26 women below par, including representatives from Thailand, Northern Ireland, Japan, Finland, England and South Africa.

  • Xander Schauffele leads by five strokes after second round of Travelers Championship Xander Schauffele leads by five strokes after second round of Travelers Championship

    Xander Schauffele shot his second consecutive 63 to head into the weekend at the Travelers Championship at 14 under – five strokes clear of the chasing pack.

    Remarkably, Schauffele is yet to post a bogey in the tournament, with 14 birdies and 22 pars through his 36 holes.

    He started beautifully in his second trip around TPC River Highlands, birdieing three of his first five holes, and capped off his round by birdieing the picturesque 17th hole for the second day in a row.

    Schauffele was one stroke behind J.T. Poston and Rory McIlroy after Thursday's action, and tied for the round of the day on Friday along with Harold Varner III.

    At 14 under, Schauffele has tied the TPC River Highlands 36-hole record, and it ties him with Justin Rose back in 2010 for the lowest 36-hole score at the Travelers Championship since 1984.

    The five-man group tied for second place at nine under is made up of Americans Patrick Cantlay, Harris English, Nick Hardy and Kevin Kisner, as well as Australia's Cam Davis. Hardy and Kisner were the pick of that group on Friday, shooting 64s.

    McIlroy and Poston sit one shot further back at eight under after the first-round leaders both shot even-par 70s, and are joined at eight under by a group including Lee Kyoung-hoon and Matthew NeSmith.

    Webb Simpson is at seven under, rounding out the top-20, along with Michael Thorbjornsen, who is the only amateur to make the cut after rounds of 68 and 65.

    World number one Scottie Scheffler is at five under, along with Varner, with the pair taking very different routes to that number. Scheffler has been consistent, with a 68 and a 67, while Varner has been the opposite, following his opening 72 with a 63.

    With the cut-line at two under, Danny Willett and Mito Pereira were two of the players to miss out on the weekend despite being under par, while Sam Burns finished his week even, Jordan Spieth was one over, and the talented duo of Rickie Fowler and Joaquinn Neimann were at three over.

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    The Chinese 26-year-old tied the Golfclub Munchen Eichenried course record with a score of 10 under par on Thursday, taking a one-shot lead into the clubhouse after two eagles in the final four holes.

    Li will now also head into the third day in pole position, after overcoming two bogeys on the first seven holes to get himself to 15 under par.

    He has not won a DP World Tour title since 2018, when he triumphed at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic, but now has a real chance of lifting the trophy after an impressive first two rounds.

    "It's another good day in the office. I'm feeling great," Li told reporters. "I think I've only missed two cuts so far this year, so it's been working especially off the tee.

    "For sure I'm already feeling the pressure. Hopefully I can play my golf and keep calm. To be honest I didn't drive as well as yesterday, but my short game is quite okay.

    "When you get in the rough, the lie could be really bad or could be good. Sometimes you just need luck."

    His closest challenger is Ryan Fox, who is just one shot behind after going around in 64 and is chasing a third DP World Tour win.

    Play was suspended for around two hours because of the threat of lightning, and Fox brought the thunder when he stormed the back nine with four birdies. 

    It was not enough to pip Li to the lead though heading into what promises to be an enthralling weekend.

    Daan Huizing is just three shots off the lead, while Thomas Pieters' second round of 64 leaves him four back alongside Jordan Smith, with Maximilian Kieffer five shots off the leader.

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