Date: November 23, 2007
Author: Bren O'Brien at Huntingdale

Badds halfway there

Aaron Baddeley believes he is halfway to winning his first gold jacket after an excellent second-round 66 put him in a strong position going into the weekend at the MasterCard Masters. Baddeley confessed his love for the Melbourne sand belt courses earlier in the week and said he had a great desire to win at Huntingdale. Currently at eight-under, he believes if he can replicate his efforts over the first 36 holes he could realise his dream on Sunday. “I think if I finished at 16-under I would have a good chance of winning. It all depends on the wind. If the wind gets up on the weekend this course play difficult when it is windy. But I&aposd be comfortable sitting at 16,” he said. While there was a four-shot difference between Thursday&aposs and Friday&aposs rounds, Baddeley didn&apost feel a major change in his golf swing between the two days. “There really was not a big difference. I felt that I played really nicely yesterday. I doubled 15 yesterday which was disappointing. I hit the shot exactly the way I wanted and it flew three yards too far,” he said. “There were a couple of extra putts. I made a nice putt on 16 from 30 feet for birdie. A couple of those are nice to keep the momentum going,” he said. He feels there is still plenty of improvement left, especially off the tee where he hit just seven of the 14 fairways. “There were a couple of shots, a couple of overdraws off the tee. I want to get a little bit more confident with my putting. Now I am going out to hit a few putts and then that&aposs it. Overall I feel pretty good with my golf swing,” he said. If there is any part of the course he thinks he can pick up extra shots it is on the par-fives where he gained just two shots on Friday. He has also battled in the famous Huntingdale bunkers, failing to get up and down on the four times he has struck sand this week. “It is a little annoying not to birdie those holes. There seems to be a little more sand in the bunkers this year. My bunker shot on seven, it would not be that tough a shot because you would be able to spin it but with extra sand in the bunkers, it is hard to get spin,” he said.