Wales Open: Karlsson moves 4 clear

Robert Karlsson opened a four-stroke lead and posted a European Tour record low halfway total of 124 on Friday at the Wales Open.

Updated: February 25, 2007 11:34 IST
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Newport:Robert Karlsson opened a four-stroke lead and posted a European Tour record low halfway total of 124 on Friday by carding a second round 63 at the Wales Open. Karlsson birdied five in a row on the front nine and his 14-under-par total for the par-69 Roman Road Course at Celtic Manor left him well clear of the English trio of Philip Archer, the first round leader, Simon Dyson and Paul Broadhurst. Karlsson, who made 61 on Thursday, is the first to shoot 124 for 36 holes in the 34-year history of the European Tour. ''It felt very simple,'' the Swede said. ''The course is set up for low scoring if the weather is good, but not if the wind is blowing. ''This is my sixth (tournament) in a row. Before I used to get too intense and could not play three or four weeks in a row.'' Colin Montgomerie was another stroke behind in fifth place after a 66. But it could have been much better after he birdied five of the first seven holes. He felt he had thrown away a good chance, especially when he bogeyed the long 16th. ''Everyone in the field has birdied or eagled the thing so that was 2-1/2 shots gone,'' he said. ''I had an unlucky lie in the bunker and made a mess of it.'' ''When you're five under after seven you should go forward and I went very much backwards from there.'' There were more low scores in fine conditions. Jose-Filipe Lima shot an 8-under-par 61 and Dyson and Matthew Millar had 62s. Although Archer made 60 on Thursday, he managed only 68 in the second round for a 10-under 28 while Broadcast has returned two 64s. But Michael Campbell missed the halfway cut in his last event before he defends his US Open title at Winged Foot in two weeks. Campbell, who shot a 6-over 75 in the first round, improved by nine strokes Friday to a 66 but still finished four strokes outside the cut of one under par. After three straight birdies on his front nine, Campbell had a chance of making the cut until he bogeyed his 15th hole, the sixth. ''Today was about practice really for two weeks' time,'' he said. ''That's how I treated it today. I got it going again, which was nice. ''But missing cuts for me is a common thing. Quite bizarre really. I'm just kind of looking forward to the weekend off and rest up and get a few things done.'' He won't play next week's Westchester Classic. (AP)

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