Date: February 02, 2008

Aussies close to US lead

Australians Nick O&aposHern, Stuart Appleby and Robert Allenby are all within striking distance after the second day of the FBR Open in Scottsdale, Arizona. Locals Doug LaBelle and JB Holmes hold the clubhouse lead on nine-under following rounds of 64 and 65 respectively but, with play in the second round suspended in the evening because of darkness, Camilo Villegas is also tied at the top. The Colombian was four-under for the day through 12 holes when the postponement came, while Western Australian left-hander O&aposHern shares fourth place just one stroke back, alongside Pat Perez (65), Ben Crane (14 holes) and Bill Haas (13 holes). O&aposHern followed his two-under 69 on the opening day with a couple of birdies to the turn as he moved to minus four, and he grabbed another four in succession from the 14th to shoot 65 and stay within touch of the leaders. Appleby (66) and Allenby (67) also had days to remember as they improved to minus seven and equal eighth place, while their veteran compatriot Steve Elkington was four-under for the day and minus six overall through 11 holes at the close. Two shots further back are Stephen Leaney (69) and John Senden (15 holes), while Nathan Green (70) and Jason Day (12 holes) have no shots to spare, sitting on the expected cut of two-under. But Aaron Baddeley (70 for even-par), Nick Flanagan (two-over through 12 holes to even-par), Mark Hensby (one-under to plus one after 12 holes), Peter Lonard (74 for three-over), Mathew Goggin (72 for plus three), Rod Pampling (one-over through 14 to plus three), Geoff Ogilvy (70 for five-over), Steve Allan (72 for plus eight) and Brett Rumford (75 for nine-over) will all miss the cut. LaBelle&aposs flawless round included an eagle and five birdies, and Holmes had a similar day to O&aposHern with two front-nine birdies and four more coming home, while Villegas has recovered from two early bogeys with six birdies in nine holes. Scores during the second round of the FBR Open (par 71) -9: JB Holmes 68 65, Doug LaBelle 69 64, Camilo Villegas 66 (12) -8: Nick O&aposHern (Australia) 69 65, Pat Perez 69 65, Ben Crane 70 (14), Bill Haas 67 (13) -7: Stuart Appleby (Australia) 69 66, Robert Allenby (Australia) 68 67, Charles Howell 67 68, Briny Baird 71 64, Jonathan Byrd 69 (14), Kenny Perry 67 (14) -6: Steve Elkington (Australia) 69 (11) Also: -4: Stephen Leaney (Australia) 69 69, John Senden (Australia) 68 (15) -2: Nathan Green (Australia) 70 70, Jason Day (Australia) 71 (12) E: Aaron Baddeley (Australia) 72 70, Nick Flanagan (Australia) 69 (12) +1: Mark Hensby (Australia) 73 (12) +3: Peter Lonard (Australia) 71 74, Mathew Goggin (Australia) 73 72, Rod Pampling (Australia) 73 (14) +5: Geoff Ogilvy (Australia) 77 70 +8: Steve Allan (Australia) 78 72 +9: Brett Rumford (Australia) 76 75