Marc Leishman put a downpayment on reaching the World Match Play knockout phase, but it wasn’t such bright news for the other Aussies in Texas today.
Cameron Smith and Jason Day will make early exits from the WGC event at the Austin Country Club after both Queenslanders lost their second consecutive matches today.
Smith again led early, sitting 2-up through five against Australian Open champion Abraham Ancer.
But the Mexican rallied superbly and remained in contention in their Group 10 match with a 3&2 victory.
Day, who received treatment for a back injury after yesterday’s opening loss to Jim Furyk, returned looking healthier, but was no match for Henrik Stenson, who won 4&3.
Day won just one hole against the former Open champion who will have a showdown with Furyk tomorrow to determine the winner of Group 12.
The lone Aussie success belonged to Leishman.
The Victorian effectively eliminated Scotland’s Russell Knox with a 2-up victory to take top spot in Group 6, his highlight a near albatross on the par-five 12th after he bombed a downhill drive 388m.
Leishman faces Bryson DeChambeau tomorrow in the final pool match guaranteed of at least a playoff and knowing that a half against the American will be enough to advance to the knockout phase.