Gow Still Leads Smail Charging


Paul Gow followed his opening round of 60 with a 69 Friday, and retains a comfortable four-shot advantage heading into the weekend at the Canon Challenge in Sydney, Australia.
Gow is now 15-under-par 129 for 36 holes, and is looking to be in fine shape to defend this championship that earned him his first victory on the Australasian Tour last season. However, in second place at 11-under is last week's New Zealand Open champion David Smail. Smail carded a beautiful bogey-free round of 64 on Friday.
'I'm feeling pretty relaxed and it just seems to happen quite easily at the moment,' the New Zealander said. 'Hopefully, it will continue because it's a pretty good feeling.'
Should Smail continue his torrid run of golf into the weekend, a second consecutive victory in as many weeks would undoubtedly come as a pretty good feeling. Yet, Gow is playing some rather good golf himself. And he is not quite satisfied yet.
'I'm disappointed in the round,' the 30-year-old native of Sydney claimed after he opened in even-par over the first 11 holes. 'I didn't expect to have a 60 again today, I expected to struggle. I figured out what was going wrong with my technique on 11 and it got better near the end.'
Gow would go on to record three birdies over his last seven holes, and by day's end would seem to be heading into Saturday with his game coming around.
'Mentally, I handled it pretty well,' he admitted of his finish.
Five stokes off the pace is last year's runner-up Kenny Druce, who carded a 68 over the Castle Hills Country Club. And six shots back at 9-under is a group of four players, including young American sensation David Gossett. Gossett shot 68.
'All in all, I am pleased to finish with a 4-under-par score,' said the 1999 U.S. Amateur champion. 'I feel like that with two rounds to go I'm in a good position.'
Gossett, who is playing this week at the urging of fellow youngsters Aaron Baddeley and Adam Scott, is certainly in a good postion to make a run at Gow.
Nevertheless, Paul Gow is a man who is quickly becoming a real world-beater. He has already won professionally in America, on the Buy.Com circuit, and is a full-time member of the PGA Tour. He will be a tough one for anyone to overtake this weekend.
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