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Jonathan Caldwell in pursuit of best European Tour finish after second round of British Masters

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Jonathan Caldwell

Jonathan Caldwell

Jonathan Caldwell

Jonathan Caldwell stayed in the mix with another promising performance in the second round of the European Tour's British Masters.

The Clandeboye golfer added a two under par 69 to his opening 67 to reach the midway point at six under par, five behind Italian leader Renato Paratore.

Caldwell was forced to come back from a bogey, bogey start but managed to make four birdies without further blemish at Close House GC.

Playing in only his second full season on the European Tour, Caldwell have given himself a chance of his best ever finish.

That's currently a tie for 14th at the Alfred Dunhill Championship in December, when he began the season in fine fashion after winning his Tour card at qualifying school.

There was a better round from Ardglass' Cormac Sharvin on Friday but his one under par 70 is set to see him fall narrowly short of making it through to the weekend.

Despite a two over par 73 on Thursday, Sharvin had given himself a chance of making the cut as he sat two under par through 15 holes on Friday. In the end, a birdie at the 17th was sandwiched between two costly bogeys.

Leader Paratore is chasing his second European Tour victory after a 2017 success at the Nordea Masters.

"It’s obviously a different atmosphere without the crowd but I’m just delighted to be back out playing again," he said.

"I like to play every week so for me it’s great being back. During the restrictions you just have to accept it. I tried to stay in good shape physically. I did not practise much technically but I just worked every day on the physical aspect."

Amongst the players in pursuit is former Walker Cup player Oliver Fisher, three shots behind at eight under and also in search of a second Tour title.

"I didn’t have any idea what scores I would shoot this week," he said. "I’ve been playing a lot but having a card in your hand is a whole different story. So I’m fairly surprised to be honest."

The British Masters is the first outing in a six-tournament UK-swing as the Tour tries to minimise travel with action only returning earlier this month.

Belfast Telegraph