Date: February 11, 2017
Author: Brad Green

Lyle back on track

It’s been a while since Victorian Jarrod Lyle has been in this position at a tournament – and he likes the feeling.

Rounds of 69-68 has Lyle well positioned at the half-way mark of the Oates Vic Open at 13th Beach to contend for his first ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia title.

The 35-year-old begins the third round at seven-under par tied for 16th, six shots behind the half-way leader Jake McLeod, from Queensland.

Since his well-publicised return after recovering from cancer, Lyle has struggled to put results on the board both in Australia and overseas.

The Torquay-based Lyle quit the US PGA Tour last year to concentrate on his family and the next stage of his life.

Tied for 12th at the Fiji International was his best result last year from 15 events.

He missed the cut in his last Oates Vic Open appearance back in 2014 and is eager to continue his good form in this afternoon’s third round and put himself in contention come Sunday.

“The first two days have gone pretty nicely,” Lyle said. “The key around this course is to keep yourself out of trouble and I’ve done that pretty well the first two days.

“So I’ve got something to build on now.

“I’ve been playing half decent for 12 months now and just haven’t really got the scores going.

“To be able to come home, stay at home and play locally is kind of nice. It’s just a little bit more relaxing than normal.”

Lyle had an eagle and two birdies in his second round and admitted his putting left him a bit frustrated out on the course.

“I’m hitting it good and I feel like I’m putting good. I just haven’t holed that much for two days either,” Lyle said.

“So it’s nice to be on that score and know that there’s still a bit of room of improvement in my putting.

“Being six behind going into Saturday’s round, it’s not too far behind. Around this golf course, if things get tough weather-wise, then it brings everyone back down to the same level.

“So it will be nice to get out there and get a few birdies early on. The first two rounds I’ve been slow starting, so if I can get a couple early and get things rolling then it will make me happy.”