Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 September 2014

Justin Rose leads the charge but McIlroy still in hunt

Justin Rose
Justin Rose

Justin Rose remained on course for his third win in four events and a second World Golf Championship title in the Bridgestone Invitational in Akron. Rose, who celebrated his 34th birthday on Wednesday, had carded a flawless opening 65 at Firestone Country Club to lie just one shot behind overnight leader Marc Leishman.

And the former US Open champion, who won back-to-back events for the first time in his career before finishing 23rd in the Open Championship last month, overtook Leishman at the top of the leaderboard with a 67 to finish eight under par.

Australia's Leishman had earlier added a 69 to his opening 64 to lie seven under, one ahead of American Rickie Fowler, who matched the 67 of his playing partner Rose, who won the WGC-Cadillac Championship in 2012.

Rose, who was second behind Tiger Woods in this event in 2007, said: "It was a stark contrast to my round yesterday when I scrambled it around and made everything.

"Today I hit it much closer to the hole, gave myself plenty of looks and didn't quite make as many.

"I began to putt a bit better on the back nine, hit my lines."

In-form Open champion Rory McIlroy was well in the hunt on five under par through 15 holes of his second round.

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