Date: February 23, 2007
Author: Tim Webster

Rain halts day two in NZ

By Tim Webster, SportalAfter a day of persistent rain, play in the HSBC NZ PGA Championship was eventually abandoned for the day at 6.30pm, leaving half the field to finish their second rounds on Saturday morning. Earlier in the day, US rookie Michael Letzig posted a four-under 68 to take the clubhouse lead on seven-under. “I feel like we&aposve had the tough conditions with the wind yesterday afternoon and then the rain this morning, but I&aposll take it. I&aposm happy with what I&aposve got,” said the delighted American. He is joined on seven-under by Australian Peter Senior, who is one-under through 13, Chez Reavie (USA) who is minus-two after 13 and overnight leader Ryan Howison (USA) who is level-par after 10. One behind the leaders is Sal Spallone (USA) who, having had four birdies, is three-under through 13 holes, leaving him alone in second spot. Having started early on Friday morning, Kiwi Phil Tataurangi is in the house with a four-under 68, taking a share of third place at five-under. “We only get two opportunities to come home and the NZ Open and NZ PGA are as big as they come on my schedule,” said Tataurangi. “I&aposve got some momentum going now, which is key for me at the moment.” Tied with Tataurangi in third are Australian James Nitties, who added a 70 to Thursday&aposs 69, and fellow Aussie Matthew Jones who is one-under after six. Another Australian, Bradley Hughes, carded a three-under 71 and is one stroke further back at four-under, level with Canadian David Hearn (even-par at the turn), and Americans Lee Williamson (two-under after eight) and Chris Nallen (one-under through five). New Zealander Michael Long will be heading home this weekend having had a disappointing six-over 78, but fellow Kiwis Tim Wilkinson and Brad Iles are both handily placed at three-under with five and seven holes to play respectively. The cut is expected to be one-over but with so many players still to complete their second rounds that may well change on Saturday morning. Play will commence at 8am.