Date: November 24, 2017
Author: Martin Blake @ The Australian

4.30 UPDATE: Day’s Open charge

Jason Day has made his charge at the Emirates Australian Open, vaulting to a share of the lead with a run of four consecutive birdies on the back nine at The Australian.

The world No. 12, who has not won the Open before, joined Victorian Lucas Herbert in a share of the lead when he bombed a birdie at the par-three 15th hole today, having picked up shots at the 12th, 13th and 14th from close range.

The Queenslander had left his charge until late and played in the worst of the conditions, with the wind whipping across the course.

But having started with an opening 66 on Thursday, he is in position to win his first tournament since May 2016 at nine-under par through 15 holes, level with the 21-year-old Herbert, who shot a 66 today despite a bogey at the last hole.

Herbert, from Bendigo in Victoria, was an elite amateur and a member of an Australian Eisenhower Cup team before turning professional. He was runner-up in the New South Wales Open last week.

Overnight leader Cameron Davis started strongly and held part of the lead until two bogeys in a row on the back nine, on the fourth and fifth holes on the course, derailed him.

The 2015 champion Matt Jones (67 today) and Queenslander Cameron Smith (69) are among the big names who will be in contention going into the weekend.

But world No. 2 Jordan Spieth struggled for a second consecutive day, carding an even-par 71 to remain at one-under overall, eight shots from the lead. The American will need two low rounds to have a chance of winning the Open for the third time.