Date: February 28, 2009
Author: PA Sport and Sportal

Webster leads, Aussies in touch

A quartet of Australians trail leader Steve Webster by four strokes after the second round of the Indonesia Open. Marcus Fraser, Darren Beck, Tony Carolan and Gavin Flint are all on two under at the halfway point of the tournament. Webster leads outright at six-under after he birdied his final three holes. The Englishman entered the second round of the $US 1.25 million ($AU 1,950,000) co-sanctioned event on three under, five strokes adrift of leader Angelo Que of the Philippines. But with the Filipino struggling in the blustery conditions at New Kuta Golf Club, Webster carded a second consecutive 69 to move into the lead, one shot ahead of Denmark&aposs Jeppe Huldahl (66), Jamie Donaldson of Wales (71) and English compatriot Simon Dyson (71). Que followed his sparkling opening-round 64 with six bogeys in a four-over 76 which dropped him into a tie for fifth on four under with Scotland&aposs Scott Drummond (69), Gaurav Ghei of India (68), Korean Ted Oh (67), Thai ace Thongchai Jaidee (69) and the English trio of Ross McGowan (71), Miles Tunnicliff (71) and Simon Griffiths (70). Defending champion Felipe Aguilar of Chile missed the cut of two over par after shooting a 75 to finish on five over with Nick Dougherty, who suffered a disastrous back nine which included a triple bogey, a double bogey and two bogeys in a round of 77. Webster, who has made the cut in only two of his six European Tour events this season, was unspectacular for much of his round, parring his first 10 holes before bogeying the 11th to drop to two under. But he bounced back immediately with a long birdie putt at the next hole, and finished strongly to take sole possession of the lead. “I actually played some of my best golf on the front nine, without getting any real rewards,” said the 34-year-old. “Golf&aposs a strange game because I could&aposve easily been four or five under par through nine, but instead I turned in level par. Then I three-putted the 11th and I thought it was going to be one of those days.” “But I made a great birdie on the 12th with a 20-foot putt and all of a sudden I&aposm back in the game.” “The three birdies to finish were the icing on the cake really, but it was probably no more than I deserved after the way I played, because I was pretty consistent all day long.” Having played a patient game for the last two days, Webster intends to maintain the same approach during the weekend as he attempts to win on Tour for the first time since the 2007 Portugal Masters. “It&aposs a bit of a cliche, but I&aposve just got to keep doing what I&aposm doing and keep the ball on the golf course.” “You can&apost afford to get carried away or take liberties with the course because it&aposll punish you.” “But I&aposm enjoying it so far and I&aposm looking forward to the weekend. If the weather holds up like this it&aposll be nice.” Huldahl bounced back from a disappointing finish to his first round to card the day&aposs best round of 66 which included seven birdies and just a single bogey. “I finished my first round really poorly yesterday but today I played a little better. It was still not brilliant, but I&aposve got to be happy with my score,” said the 26-year-old who regained his European Tour card after finishing 10th on the Challenge Tour last year. “I think I found almost every fairway, which always helps. I missed about two greens but scrambled the ones I missed, so it was a good day at the office.” Dyson was one of 42 players who had to return early to complete their first rounds following a two-hour suspension of play on the first day due to heavy rain and the threat of lightning. He struggled early on with bogeys on two of his first four holes but picked up four birdies and dropped only one more shot the rest of the way to put himself in contention for his second Indonesia Open title in four years.