Weather Halts Play In Wales

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For the second day in a row, rain fell in Newport, Wales. But unlike Thursday's drizzle, the rains came harder, longer, and were accompanied by lightning, forcing tournament officials to suspend play for the day.
 
Play for The Celtic Manor Resort Wales Open will resume Saturday morning at 7:30 AM on the Wentwood course.
 
The weather caused three separate delays for a total of five and a half hours before officials finally made the call.
 
Paul Lawrie, the 1999 British Open champion, is atop the leaderboard at 9-under-par after completing 11 of his 18 holes. He is 4-under for the day.
 
First-round co-leader Richard Green, who started the day at 7-under, got in five holes and is a stroke back of Lawrie at 8-under-par.
 
The other first-round co-leader, James Kingston, did not even make it to the tee box, and remains at 7-under.
 
In fact, half of the of the 150 players in the field didn't get to tee off, while a total of three players actually finished their rounds.
 
Last year's tournament was also plagued by horrible weather conditions and was eventually shortened to 36 holes, with Ireland's Paul McGinley picking up the win after a sudden-death playoff.
 
We have had a pretty miserable day,' Tournament Director Mike Stewart admitted, 'The low cloud base killed us early on. There was only one golf shot on the course which prevented us from playing and that was the tee shot at the second. The rest of the course was clear.
 
Eventually that cleared and we got started again, but then heavy rainfall and flooded greens meant we had to stop. There was lightening floating around the Bristol area in the afternoon and we had one strike within two or three miles from us, at which point we felt, in the interests of safety, that we ought to get the players and spectators off the course as quickly as we could.
 
Lawrie, who just last week faced similar conditions in a tournament held in his native Arberdeen, realizes there's nothing the golfers can do about it.
 
It doesnt bother me at all he said. These stop-starts are just part of the job.
 
Ian Woosnam and Darren Clarke are some of the big names that didn't tee off. Woosnam sits at 2-under and Clarke at minus 4.
 
Full-field scores from The Celtic Manor Resort Wales Open