Emirates Australian Open, Marcus Fraser Leads with a Hole in One

Marcus Fraser

Marcus Fraser / Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Aussie Marcus Fraser leads the Emirates Australian Open at the conclusion of the second round at The Lakes golf course in Sydney, with another -3 under par, 69 round, and a tournament total of -6 under par. Marcus, who played in the mornings calm conditions has a one shot advantage over John Senden and Brendan Jones. Marcus aced the par 3 fifteenth hole to cap off a remarkable seven weeks playing golf in seven different countries. Next week he will travel to Malaysia to see if he can win the Asian Tour money title. Marcus spoke of his ace, and his grueling schedule;

” To have one go in like that, it turned the round and the tournament around from where I was. I’ve been playing so much I feel like I’m going with the flow a little bit, playing week-in, week-out you’re going through the same routine every day and it feels like another golf tournament. At the same time it is the Aussie Open. Definitely it’s the pick of the bunch of the eight weeks for me.”

Take a look at the late season schedule of Marcus, starting  September in Malaysia, then China WGC-HSBC Champions, the Barclays Singapore Open, the UBS Hong Kong Open, the European Tour’s DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, then a failed attempt to secure a 2013 PGA Tour card in California last week, and back to Malaysia next week.

John Senden played in the windy afternoon conditions and could only manage a +1 over par round, falling back to -5 under par for the tournament and tied in second place with Brendan Jones, who carded a -1 under par second round, for his -5 under par total.

On his own in fourth place is another Aussie, Nick Cullen, he had a second round of  -2 under par and a total of -4 under for the tournament.

World number four, Justin Rose started well, with four birdies on the front nine to move into the lead at -7 under par, but unusually fell behind with four bogeys in six holes in the windy afternoon conditions, leaving him with a +1 over par 73, tied in fifth position at -3 under par. Adam Scott managed a -1 under par second round and is five shots off the pace.

Story of the day was made by 63 year-old Tom Watson, who fired in a second round -4 under par 68, to make the cut by one shot after his terrible start to the tournament sinking to a first round total of 78. Tom expressed his desire to succeed;

” I hate missing cuts, I really do, that means you’ve failed.”

Tom”s playing partner, Greg Chalmers also just made the cut by one shot, and was not happy with his performance in the easier morning conditions;

” Three par fives on the back nine and I bogeyed two of them. That’s not going to work if you want to have a good score out here. I guess I’m going to get to play on the weekend so I get to go out and shoot a low score, but certainly I’m probably going to start a long way back.”

It certainly looks like the winner of this tournament will be the player who can master the windier afternoon conditions for the next two days.

 

 

Emirates Australian Open, John Senden Sizzles in 1st Round

 

 

Emirates Australian Open

 

 

Senden Caddie

John Senden / australianpga

John Senden certainly sizzled in the opening round of the Emirates Australian Open at The Lakes golf course in Sydney, shooting a -6 under par 66, to lead by one shot. John has had another consistent year on the  US PGA Tour, earning five top ten finishes, and he capitalised here as he took advantage of the light winds earlier in the day. The afternoon players had to contend with a stiff breeze, which made the going a little bit more difficult. The 41 year-old John reckons he is playing some of the best golf of his life;

” I’ve been playing some of the best golf I’ve played in my life,’ I just need to believe in that and keep going forward. I’ve played with them all. I know how they are. It’s about standing on the stage and being comfortable. That’s where it’s at. I feel like I’m getting better at that. I’m moving forward, slowly getting better, that’s where my whole career’s been going. I need to continue in that direction and keep everything simple and just play.”

John has also been caddying for his son Jacob at Keparra Golf Club in Brisbane, his own Alma Mater, he spoke about Jacob;

” He’s starting to get to know the game of golf a bit. He’s always been able to hit the ball well but now’s the time I can get him on the golf course and learn a bit about walking six, seven, eight holes, learning a bit about etiquette. He’s starting to get the gist of it. He’s into every sport. He loves it. When I first took him out I took him in a golf kart and all he wanted to do was drive the golf kart. Now we’re walking, it’s fun being out there with him and hopefully he’ll continue to play the game and enjoy it.”

Five players are just one shot back of the leader, three Aussies, one Kiwi and one Englishman, in the shape of World number four, and one of the favorites here, Justin Rose.  Justin mentioned the early start time today;

” You assume the early morning round is the one you have to post a good number, all in all, it’s a good start.”

The three Aussies who also shot 68 and are at -4 under par are, Kim Felton, Richard Green and Brendan Jones. Joining that bunch is Kiwi Gareth Padison.

Adam Scott, one of the more fancied players to lift this trophy posted an even par round of 72, leaving him six shots off the pace at the top of the leaderboard. Adam admitted to being a little bit off;

It was good conditions this morning but I tried to play quite aggressively my first nine and hit a few ordinary shots, nothing too bad but got in a bit of trouble and wasted opportunities out there. So I was a little bit off but I played fairly good the front nine in pretty tricky conditions with the wind getting up. That’s the tougher nine so not too much damage done but I’m certainly giving them a head start this week. I would have loved to have been a few shots better but there’s another 54 holes, that’s a lot of golf to play so a course like this. If you can have a good nine holes you’re right back in it.”

Adam is probably right, we will see how the broomstick performs on the greens tomorrow, after Adam had been practicing here with a conventional putter, before the tournament began.