Date: September 12, 2009
Author: PA Sport

Leishman on the pace

Australian Marc Leishman maintained his composure to remain just one stroke from the lead at the halfway mark of the BMW Championship in Illinois. Leishman mixed four bogeys with six birdies four of those coming over the final four holes to card a second-round two-under 69 to sit in a tie for third place at six-under. He trails American duo Tiger Woods and Mark Wilson at the top of the leaderboard. Wilson was the long-time clubhouse leader after a second-round 66 saw him move to seven-under, but the 34-year-old saw his advantage gradually eroded by Woods, who secured a share of the lead with a birdie on the 17th. Woods&apos day began with a bogey on the first after hooking his drive into a fairway bunker but thereafter his round was unblemished as five birdies lifted him to the top of the pile. Woods is a four-time winner at Cog Hill and will fancy of converting his 36-hole lead into a fifth title, but local boy Wilson knows the course like the back of his hand and will be there or thereabouts come Sunday. Leishman shares third with Padraig Harrington, American Bo Van Pelt and overnight leader Rory Sabbatini of South Africa at six-under. Harrington carded a 68 for the second day in succession but it could have been so much better for the three-time major winner, however, after a bogey on the 18th deprived him of a share of the overnight lead. Steve Marino suffered a nightmare second round, however, falling from five-under to one-over after five bogeys and two double bogeys on his way to a dismal 77. Zach Johnson and John Rollins were the biggest movers on day two, both carding 65s to move onto four-under alongside fellow Americans Brandt Snedeker, Sean O&aposHair and Anthony Kim. Meanwhile, a closing double bogey from Ryder Cup Dane Soren Hansen – the only one on the hole all day – left England&aposs Chris Wood and Australian Scott Strange sharing the halfway lead at the Mercedes-Benz Championship in Cologne. Wood, the 21-year-old from Bristol who was third in The Open in July, continued his bid for a first European Tour title with a 69. For the second day running he kept a bogey off his card – he cannot recall ever doing that on consecutive days in his career – but his round did include a chip-in par at the short eighth and then a holed bunker shot on the 458-yard 14th. “It was a bit of a battle, but I&aposll take another 18 holes without a bogey – and hopefully another 36,” said Wood, who now stands nine-under. Strange, winner of last year&aposs Wales Open and this season&aposs China Open, scored a 68, while Hansen&aposs 71 dropped him into a tie for third with South African James Kingston and England&aposs Ross Fisher. Hansen had not dropped a shot himself over the the first 29 holes and led by three, but he then bogeyed the 12th and 14th to bring the chasing pack back into things. A birdie on the 523-yard 15th appeared to have settled the 2007 winner down again, but he hooked his drive down the 456-yard 18th into the water and then went over the green for three. BMW Championships Round 2 -7: Mark Wilson 69 66, Tiger Woods 68 67 -6: Padraig Harrington 68 68, Rory Sabbatini 66 70, Bo Van Pelt 67 69, Marc Leishman (Australia) 67 69 -5: Bubba Watson 69 68 -4: Brandt Snedeker 69 69, Sean O Hair 70 68, Zach Johnson 73 65, John Rollins 73 65, Anthony Kim 69 69 -3: Matt Kuchar 71 68, Bill Haas 71 68, Luke Donald 70 69, Sergio Garcia 71 68, David Toms 68 71, Heath Slocum 70 69 Also: -5: John Senden (Australia) 70 70 -1: Geoff Ogilvy (Australia) 68 73 +2: Jason Day (Australia) 71 73 +5: Nathan Green (Australia) 73 74 +7: Robert Allenby (Australia) 75 74 2nd Round of the Mercedes Benz Championship -9: Scott Strange (Australia) 67 68, Chris Wood 66 69 -8: Ross Fisher 67 69, Soren Hansen 65 71, James Kingston 67 69 -7: David Drysdale 67 70, Niclas Fasth 70 67, Graeme Storm 69 68 -6: Simon Dyson 68 70, Anders Hansen 70 68, Peter Hanson 70 68, Soren Kjeldsen 69 69, Henrik Stenson 70 68 -5: Paul Lawrie 68 71, Prayad Marksaeng 71 68, Francesco Molinari 68 71, Anthony Wall 69 70, Lee Westwood 70 69 Also: -1: Rod Pampling (Australia) 71 72 +6: Mark Brown (New Zealand) 75 75 +12: Michael Campbell (New Zealand) 77 79