Date: April 04, 2009
Author: PA Sport and Sportal

Ogilvy, Senden lead at Houston

Australian pair Geoff Ogilvy and John Senden had a share of the lead at the Houston Open before round two was suspended due to darkness. Ogilvy and Senden had completed 14 and 10 holes respectively of their second rounds and are both progressively eight under the card overall. The Aussie duo are equal leaders with Englishman Paul Casey who is battling it out with Ogilvy for supremacy on the PGA Tour again as the wind-delayed tournament played catch up. With no opening rounds completed on schedule following high winds of 45 miles per hour on Thursday (US time), England&aposs Casey and Ogilvy completed their first 18 holes on Friday morning in Texas with the Englishman shooting a six-under-par 66, one better than the Australian. Casey had lost to Ogilvy at the end of February in the final of the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play in Tucson, Arizona, near to their homes in Scottsdale, and the pair were soon vying for the halfway lead at Redstone Golf Club. Both men turned straight around to begin their second rounds with Casey one shot off the pace set by Americans Nicholas Thompson and Briny Baird and Senden at seven-under on the par-72, 7457-yard course. Also on six under were Australian James Nitties and an American quartet of DA Points, Scott Piercy, Colt Knost and Tommy Armour III with Ogilvy, Jonathan Byrd of the USA and Northern Ireland&aposs Rory McIlroy another shot back having shot 67s. Americans Fred Couples, Dudley Hart and Justin Leonard formed part of a large group on four under alongside Justin Rose of England with Sergio Garcia of Spain and Englishman Lee Westwood among those at three-under following 69s. Thompson and Baird quickly fell off the pace as Ogilvy, starting on the back nine, holed four consecutive birdies to move into the lead at nine-under. A bogey at the par-five 7th failed to derail the Australian, a two-time winner already this year, as he bounced back with three straight birdies. The front nine, though, did stall Ogilvy as he double-bogeyed the par-four 2nd and bogeyed the par-five 4th to fall into a tie for the lead. There he joined Senden who had stayed in touch with just one birdie and nine pars over his first 10 holes and Casey, who managed to complete his second round in 70. American Bo Van Pelt was in the clubhouse on seven under following a second-round 67 alongside Byrd who was two under for his round after 16 when play was halted. Sweden&aposs Henrik Stenson had moved into contention at seven-under after 13 holes, five under for his round with Armour and Knost also in the five-way tie for fourth and a further seven players within two shots of the leaders at six-under including Nitties and compatriot Stuart Appleby and Colombia&aposs Camilo Villegas, none of whom had completed their second rounds. Casey will be one of only five players in the field, including fellow Englishman Brian Davis at four-under following a 69, not having to return to the course on this morning to complete their second rounds while Westwood is one of 72 players still to begin theirs. Australian two-time Open champion Greg Norman, 54, will begin his second round at one-under after holding his own with his younger rivals in his tune for next week&aposs return to the Masters after a six-year absence. Open and US PGA champion Padraig Harrington carded a level 72 as did Sweden&aposs Daniel Chopra. His compatriot Fredrik Jacobson finished with a 77, as did two-time winner this year Phil Mickelson, following a double bogey at the par-three 7th, his 16th. England&aposs Greg Owen and Luke Donald also get their rounds under way this morning, each having carded a one-over-par 73 while Alvaro Quiros of Spain completed his opening round with an 11-over-par 83, a long way off the projected cut mark at level par.