Date: March 29, 2008

Lonard lets it slip

Three bogeys in his closing four holes have cost Australian Peter Lonard the upper hand at the halfway mark of the New Orleans Classic. Lonard began the second round locked in a share of second place but went to the front courtesy of five birdies through 13 holes. However, the tournament&aposs leading Australian recorded bogeys at the 15th, 17th and 18th to reduce him to two-under-par for the day. Lonard signed for a 70 to be one shot adrift of American Briny Baird who is eight-under the card. Baird drained a 20-foot putt at the final hole to take the single-stroke lead over Lonard and fellow American Jay Williamson at TPC Louisiana. Lonard was one of eight Australians to make the cut with veteran Steve Elkington (71) the next best at five-under-par. Nathan Green is within striking distance, four shots off the frontrunner, while compatriot Mark Hensby is a further two shots behind. Matt Jones, John Senden, Matthew Goggin and Brett Rumford will all play the weekend. Those to miss the cut were Rod Pampling, Jason Day, Stephen Leaney, Nick Flanagan and Steve Allan. Lonard told reporters after his round that his sizzling start would be his focus, not the disappointing way he ended his day. “I started off really well. Hit a lot of close shots the first six holes, and I only holed one of them,” he said. “I&aposm thinking, this is going to be a good day. I holed a few more later on, and unfortunately came in in an ambulance the last few.” “My irons were good, and I gave myself a lot of opportunities, hit a lot of greens in the first 14 holes, and of course near the end there I hit it all over the shop and got what I deserved,” he added.