Trio Share Lead at Russian Open

By Sports NetworkAugust 18, 2006, 4:00 pm
European Tour MOSCOW, Russia -- Spaniards Carlos Rodiles and Francis Valera joined first-round leader David Drysdale atop the leaderboard Friday after two rounds at the Russian Open.
 
Valera shot a 5-under 67 and Rodiles had a 3-under 69 to reach 12-under-par 132 heading into the weekend.
 
Drysdale followed up his course record-tying 62 on Thursday with a 2-under 70 at Le Meridian Moscow Country Club, allowing the Scotsman to retain at least a share of the lead.
 
The trio leads by one shot over Alejandro Canizares, also from Spain, who carded a 5-under 67 to stand alone in fourth place at 11-under 133.
 
South Africa's James Kingston shot a 69 and is fifth at 10-under 134, one shot ahead of four players who share sixth place, including defending champion Mikael Lundberg of Sweden and the player he beat in a playoff last year, Englishman Andrew Butterfield.
 
Among the co-leaders, Rodiles had the best chance to take the lead by himself, but he bogeyed his final two holes after playing the first 16 at 5-under.
 
'I am hitting the ball well,' said Rodiles, 'but the thing is that when you are playing that well you should not be giving so many shots away. I made three bogeys today and at least two of them should not have happened.'
 
Valera played steadily and collected six birdies with just one bogey. He has his sights set on trumping his best-ever finish on the European Tour -- seventh place at the Deutsche Bank TPC Open, a full 10 years ago.
 
'I had a lot more hair then,' Valera joked. 'It feels great to be back in this position. I just have to keep going and keep learning because you never stop learning in this game.'
 
As for Drysdale, he failed to capture the magic that brought him his 62 on Thursday. Not that there's too many players around who can accomplish such a feat, as he knows.
 
'Unless your name is Tiger Woods, it is quite difficult to do that,' admitted Drysdale, who had four birdies and two bogeys Friday. 'I think I'm disappointed because I know this golf course so well and today's round felt worse than it actually was.'
 
Lundberg and Butterfield shot matching 67s in the second round. Looking to become the first repeat champion ever at this event, Lundberg had six birdies and one bogey Friday.
 
'I feel like I can't shoot over par around this golf course, which is a great feeling to have,' he said. 'I just wish I felt like that every week. I don't know why that is -- if I knew what it was, then I would take it every week.'
 
Joining Lundberg and Butterfield at minus-9 were Sweden's Fredrik Andersson (69) and Ireland's Gary Murphy (68).
 
The cut line fell at 1-under with 74 players in a field of 111 moving on to the weekend.
 
Related Links:
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    Kelly, Sauers co-lead in Hawaii; Monty, Couples in mix

    By Associated PressJanuary 19, 2018, 3:52 am

    KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii - Fresh off a solid performance on Oahu, Jerry Kelly shot an 8-under 64 on the Big Island on Thursday to share the first-round lead at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.

    The 51-year-old Kelly, who tied for 14th at the PGA Tour's Sony Open last week in Honolulu, birdied five of his final seven holes to shoot 30 on the back nine at Hualalai. He won twice last season, his first on the over-50 tour.

    Gene Sauers also shot 64, going bogey-free amid calm conditions. Thirty-two of the 44 players broke par in the limited-field event, which includes winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

    Rocco Mediate and Colin Montgomerie were one shot back, and Fred Couples, Kevin Sutherland and Kirk Triplett were another shot behind.

    Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, was in the middle of the pack after a 69.

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    Rahm (62) fires career low round

    By Will GrayJanuary 19, 2018, 12:03 am

    The scores were predictably low during the opening round of the CareerBuilder Challenge, where the top-ranked player in the field currently sits atop the standings. Here's how things look after the first day in Palm Springs as Jon Rahm is out to an early advantage:

    Leaderboard: Jon Rahm (-10), Austin Cook (-9), Andrew Landry (-9), Jason Kokrak (-9), Brandon Harkins (-8), Martin Piller (-8), Aaron Wise (-8), Beau Hossler (-8)

    What it means: Rahm is coming off a runner-up finish two weeks ago at Kapalua, and he picked up right where he left off with a 10-under 62 at La Quinta Country Club. It marked his lowest career round on the PGA Tour, and it gave him a one-shot lead heading to the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Cook is the only player within two shots of Rahm who has won already on Tour.

    Round of the day: Rahm got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under, and he made it around La Quinta without dropping a shot. The 62 bettered his previous career low on Tour by two shots and it included an eagle on the par-5 fifth hole to go along with eight birdies.

    Best of the rest: Cook was a winner earlier this season at the RSM Classic, and he's now in the mix for trophy No. 2 following a 9-under 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Like Rahm, he opened with a seven-hole stretch at 6 under and turned in a scorecard without a bogey. He'll now head to the more difficult Stadium Course for his second round.

    Biggest disappointment: Patrick Reed blitzed the three-course rotation in Palm Springs en route to his first career Tour title back in 2014, but he's unlikely to repeat that feat after opening with a 2-over 74 on the Nicklaus Tournament course. Reed made only one birdie against three bogeys and was one of only 32 players in the 156-man field who failed to break par in the opening round.

    Main storyline heading into Friday: Rahm deserves the spotlight, as he entered the week as one of the event's headliners and did nothing to lose that billing in the opening round. But the pack of contenders is sure to keep pace, while players like Phil Mickelson (-2) will look to put up a low score in order to build some momentum heading into the weekend.

    Shot of the day: Wesley Bryan's 7-under 65 on the Nicklaus Tournament course was helped in large part by an eagle on the par-4 10th, where he holed a 54-degree wedge from 112 yards away. Bryan went on to birdie the next hole amid a five-hole stretch of 5 under play.

    Quote of the day: "Shot 10 under par. There's not much more I can ask for." - Rahm

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    Recent winner Cook contending at CareerBuilder

    By Will GrayJanuary 18, 2018, 11:45 pm

    Patton Kizzire is currently the only two-time PGA Tour winner this season, but Austin Cook hopes to join him this week at the CareerBuilder Challenge.

    Cook won for the first time in November at the RSM Classic, a victory that catapaulted him from the Web.com Tour graduate category into an entirely new echelon. Cook notched a pair of top-25 finishes over the last two weeks in Hawaii, and he's again in the mix after an opening 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course left him one shot behind Jon Rahm.

    "Today was great," Cook told reporters. "The conditions were perfect, but I always loved desert golf and I was just hitting the ball well and seeing good lines on the greens and hitting good putts."

    Cook got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under highlighted by an eagle on the par-5 fourth hole. He briefly entertained the notion of a sub-60 round after birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 before closing with six pars and a birdie.


    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos


    Cook was a relative unknown before his victory at Sea Island earlier this season, but now with the flexibility and confidence afforded by a win he hopes to build on his burgeoning momentum this week in California.

    "That was a big, proud moment for myself, knowing that I can finish a tournament," Cook said. "I think it was one of those things that I've proven to myself that now I can do it, and it just meant the world to me."

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    Photo: Fleetwood's phone cover is picture of Bjorn

    By Jason CrookJanuary 18, 2018, 11:40 pm

    There's phone covers and then there are Phone Covers.

    Paul Casey has himself a Phone Cover, showing off the protective case that features a picture of his wife at last year's U.S. Open.

    Now, it appears, Tommy Fleetwood has joined the movement.

    Fleetwood, last year's season-long Race to Dubai winner, has a phone cover with a picture of Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn on it. And not even a current Thomas Bjorn. This is a young Bjorn. A hair-having Bjorn.

    @tommyfleetwood_1

    A post shared by Alex Noren (@alexnoren1) on

    The 26-year-old is a virtual lock for this year's European Ryder Cup team, but just in case, he's carrying around a phone with a picture of the team captain attached to the back of it.

    It's a bold strategy, Cotton. Let's see if it pays off for him.