Date: October 17, 2008

WATC Day 2: Australia launches first assault

Australia roared into life on Friday with an impressive 7-under par round to jump 10 places on the leaderboard and into sixth place going into the weekend. Captain Stuart Cox said he was pleased with the improvement. It was a better day for us out there, I guess the crucial thing was more putts dropped when we needed them to. We need to come out and put in a good performance tomorrow too, Cox said. Starting on Grange West s 10th tee, New South Welshman Tim Stewart set the pace with three birdies in his opening six holes. Four solid pars had Stewart coming through nine at 3-under par. Stewart began his second half with another birdie but a bogey on the par-4 third hole dropped him back to 3-under. In a superb recovery, Stewart shot back-to-back birdies on 5 and 6 to get back to 5-under for the day and finished with a second round 67. I was hitting the ball solidly so I was pleased with that. I still thought I left a few shots out there on the greens, but I can t complain, Stewart said. Matt Griffin made an equally solid start, parring his first seven holes before a bogey on the 17th brought him back to 1-over. Included in the opening seven holes was a superb save after a wayward fairway shot landed off to the left of the green on the 11th. A deft chip and a neat putt rescued what was shaping up as a challenging situation. Griffin headed down the front nine with a birdie on the par-5 first hole and went par-birdie-par-birdie until a bogey on the 7th left him at 1-under. A comfortable finish on the final holes left him at 1-under. It feels great to move up the board, Griffin said. We re off to a reasonable start now and hope we can let the golf talk from here. We were probably a little bit tight in the first round after all the build-up but that s out of the way now we can get on with things. Rohan Blizard began his front nine with some good pars and a birdie-bogey combination on 13 and 14. Three consecutive birdies on 18, 1 and 2 took him to 3-under but a late bogey on the 8th left him with a 2-under par (70) for the day. SCOREBOARD Rohan Blizard 75-70 (E) Matt Griffin 72-71 (-2) Tim Stewart 76-67 (-2)