Date: March 30, 2013
Author: Omnisport

Wheatcroft on top in Houston

A second consecutive five-under 67 has seen Steve Wheatcroft take a one-shot lead at the halfway mark of the Houston Open. The American will be eyeing his maiden PGA Tour title after moving into 10 under at the Redstone Golf Club in Texas on Friday. Wheatcroft, 35, is just clear of countrymen Jason Kokrak, who carded a three-under 69, and overnight leader DA Points. Points produced a brilliant eight-under 64 in the first round and was consistent on Friday, holing a single birdie in his 71. Englishman Brian Davis sits at seven under alongside American Stewart Cink, who surged into a tie for fourth with a six-under 66. Americans Bill Haas and Cameron Tringale and Argentine Angel Cabrera are sitting at six under. Wheatcroft only booked his place in the field in a Monday qualifier but has impressed, going through bogey-free in the second round. He holed birdies at holes 13 and 14 after starting on the back nine and three in a row from the second saw him into the clubhouse lead, which he held onto. A double bogey on the 17th proved costly for Kokrak, while Cink&aposs impressive round included six birdies. World number two Rory McIlroy only just made the cut as a birdie on the par-five 8th – his 17th hole – saw him to a two-under 70 and one under for the tournament. Even par or worse will miss the weekend and American Phil Mickelson – champion in 2011 – joined McIlroy in surviving, also ending up at one under. Defending champion Hunter Mahan missed the cut after rounds of 74 and 71. Geoff Ogilvy&aposs hopes of qualifying for the US Masters took a huge hit as a seven-over 79 saw him miss the cut. Two double bogeys and three bogeys proved costly for Ogilvy, who needs to win the Texas Open next week to have any chance of qualifying for the first major of the year. Matt Jones and Aaron Baddeley are the best-placed Australians at three under, with Cameron Percy and Steven Bowditch also making the cut. Stuart Appleby, Robert Allenby, Greg Chalmers and John Senden joined Ogilvy in being among several Australians to miss the cut.