Date: August 05, 2012
Author: Omnisport

Aussies still chasing Matthew

Scotland&aposs Catriona Matthew fired a one-under-par 71 to maintain her lead heading into the final round of the Ladies Irish Open. Matthew finished the second day at the Killeen Castle course with a six-under-par total of 138 to lead by two shots from fellow Scot Carly Booth, who carded a second round 69, and Swede Pernilla Lindberg. Norwegian defending champion Suzann Pettersen is fourth after a two-round total of 141, while England&aposs Elizabeth Bennett is one-under after the second round. Matthew had three birdies on the front nine but heavy rain meant that afternoon tee times were delayed by 25 minutes. She came back in two-over par after mixing a further two birdies with a pair of bogeys and a double at the 17th after she found the water off the tee. “I&aposm a little bit disappointed. I played well on the front nine and then just a bad drive on 17 cost me a double: one under, so not too bad,” the 42-year-old said. Booth also played in the worst of the conditions. She birdied the first, sixth and ninth going out and was five under for the day after two more birdies at 10 and 15, but found the water on the par-three 16th resulting in a double bogey. “I missed a lot of chances. I was hitting it very close today but I holed a number of them as well,” Booth said. “I would have been really happy with my round if I didn&apost put it in the water on 16, so other than that, it would have been a really good day.” Englishwoman Felicity Johnson, American Alison Walshe and Scot Kylie Walker are all even par, while Australian Nikki Garrett is a further shot behind after carding a 72. Compatriot Rachel Bailey fired a two-over 76 to fall into a tie for 15th at plus two with Alison Whitaker.