Nelson Mandela Championship, A 59 before the Rain halted Play Again.

Jorge Campillo and Colin Nel both recorded second rounds of 59 in the rain-washed Nelson Mandela Championship, before play was halted once again at the Mount Edgecombe Country Club in South Africa.

Jorge Campillo  (Getty Images)

Jorge Campillo / Getty Images

Despite their heroic efforts Jorge and Colin are still behind the tournament leader Daniel Brooks, and he has yet to complete his second round, and has added another four birdies to his total in this 54 hole event.

Daniel still occupies the top spot at -12 under par, and will have the chance to extend his lead over the last seven holes when play resumes at 06:00 on Saturday morning.

Jorge, who is tied in second place at -11 under par, and is bidding for his first European Tour title was happy with his play, especially the way he finished the round;

 “We play other par 70s on Tour, but you still have to shoot 59 and I’m pretty happy with the way I finished. I was ten under after 14 holes and had two tough par fours and a tough par three coming in. I was never close to 59 before, but in the KLM Open I was eight under with three holes to go on a par 70. Finishing with three birdies would have put me on 59, but I finished par-par-bogey. That helped me a lot today, because finishing well was important and I did it.”

Mathew Baldwin is one of the three players tied at -11 under par, after his second round -8 under par 62, and hopes tiredness will not come into the reckoning;

“I don’t think tiredness comes into it , what does come into it is the fact that you’re playing a lot of holes close together. For example, I played 21 holes in a short space of time today and by the time I finished I was quiet tired, so getting some rest in will be important for tomorrow.”

Dowie Van Der Walt is the third player on -11 under par, with World number 49 Brandon Grace just two shots off the lead at the moment at – 10 under par.

Brandon spoke about his feelings for Nelson Mandela;

“I feel like this week shows what happens when you make those few extras putts. I’m right up there again and it’s all about the putting. If I can keep rolling the ball well then hopefully tomorrow will be one more memory of lifting a trophy. It would be great to finish the year off with a win. Mandela is one of the reasons I am here, a lot of people think I’m here for the top 50, but I think I’ve secured that for the year. Coming here you’re trying to get the win for Madiba, not that it will make everything better for the country, but hopefully it will put a little smile on some people’s faces. Maybe if you lift the trophy at the end you can say ‘this is for him’.”

Euro Tour. Lyoness Open, Joost Jumps Into Three shot Lead.

In the European Tour Lyoness Open third round Joost Luiten has jumped into a three shot lead at the Diamond Country Club in Austria.

Joost Luiten  (Getty Images)

Joost Luiten / Getty Images

Joost took a leaf out of the balloon’s performance and took off during the third round with a -5 under par, 67 that elevated the Dutchman to the top of the leaderboard at -16 under par, and three shots clear of the field going into the final round.

Joost said he found it easy;

“It’s easy if you play like I did on the back nine, but the first fives holes were tough. Once I settled down a bit I started to play better, hit some good shots and make some putts. The first hole you’re always nervous. It’s always better to be leading than be behind. I don’t mind playing with the lead.”

Tied in second place at -13 under par are the Spanish armada of Jorge Campillo and Eduardo De La Riva, who will be fighting to chase down the leader all the way to the end on Sunday. These two are the only ones who realistically have a chance to challenge for the lead during the final round.

Round of the day went to Thomas Björn of Denmark who had a sparkling third round at the Diamond Country Club of -8 under par 64. This score fired him up the leaderboard for a share of fourth place at -11 under par. His polished performance started to shine in strange circumstances on the par fourth 12th hole, when he was contemplating changing his ball , then saw his approach shot find the hole;

” I hit the drive and I said to my caddie to change the ball at the next hole as the flight was a bit funny. Then I holed the second shot and he looked at me and said, flying funny is it. I’ve been plodding along and playing alright but not great. Something clicked into place today and I couldn’t stop making birdies on the back nine.”

Thomas could produce another sparkling round tomorrow, but Joost is the one holding all the aces at the Diamond Country Club.

 

 

Reale Seguros Open de España. Molinari Wins

                                                                                                                                      

Magic final round secures title for Molinari

Francesco Molinari (Getty Images)

Francesco Molinari shot a brilliant closing round of -7 under par and 65, and a tournament total of -8, to win the Reale Seguros Open de España, his  third European Tour title. The overnight leader Simon Dyson could only manage a 76 , and that after birdies at the first two holes, Francesco produced the best round of the week, here in Seville, Spain. With seven birdies in the first 14 holes followed by four closing pars gave the 29 year old the first prize of more than €333,330.

Francesco knew he just needed some putts to drop;

“I knew I was playing well. I just needed some putts to drop. I was also hoping the other guys would not go too far under par and everything worked out perfectly. The first leaderboard I saw where I was leading was on 12, but they had a few more birdie chances than me and so I knew I needed a couple more.”

This win moves Francesco back into the world’s top 30, but he is still not in a qualifying position for this year’s Ryder Cup, he commented;

 “I just have to play the same golf a few more weeks and hopefully I will be there.  Everybody is desperate to make the team, but unfortunately for us there are only 12 spots. It’s going to be hard, there are a lot of great players in Europe at the moment.”

In this kind of form Francesco Molinari would be a great asset to the Ryder Cup Team.

Tied in second spot, three shots adrift of the leader were, Alejandro Canizares, Soren Kjeldsen and Pablo Larrazabal. Local favorite Jorge Campillo finished with a tournament score of -3 under par, and five shots off the winning total.

Reale Seguros Open de España in Seville, 3rd round, Dyson leads

Simon Dyson  (Getty Images)

Simon Dyson (Getty Images)

Simon Dyson leads the Reale Seguros Open de España in Seville after the third round. The highest-ranked player in the field, took over at the top in the rain-delayed third round, there was a delay of nearly two hours to clear flooded greens and bunkers. Simon holds a one shot lead over Pablo Larrazabal in the rain affected third round, completing a round 0f -1 under par 71.

Gregory Bourdy the overnight leader sadly three-putted the first and third holes of his third round, while Robert Rock  bogeyed the opening three holes. Young  Italian Matteo Manassero  bogeyed the second and dropped three more strokes at the fourth after driving into a bush.

The local favorite Jorge Campillo is only two shots behind and is still seriously involved in this competition, and with Pablo also well placed carry the hopes of Spain for a Spanish winner to the tournament.

Robert Rock and Matteo Manassero have fallen back and are at level par for the tournament and at best are now vying for the minor places, unless the leaders really make a mess of their last round.

The final round tomorrow should be an exciting day for players and spectators alike, just bring on the sunshine.

European Tour, 2nd round @ Reale Seguros Open de España in Seville

   

Gregory Bourdy  (Getty Images)

     Gregory Bourdy (Getty Images)

Gregory Bourdy leads after the second round of the Reale Seguros Open de España, in Seville. Gregory’s -6 under par round of 66 gives him just a one shot lead over four players with a tournament total of -5 under par. Right behind him at -4 under the card for the tournament are, Simon Dyson, Matteo Manassero, Robert Rock and local favorite Jorge Campillo. Anyone who is under par in this tournament is still in with a chance to win, the field is that close and so far no one has taken a grip on it.

Gregory said of the tough conditions;

“I’ve just been patient, I’ve not made a score like that for a long time in these conditions. It’s good for the confidence. I’m very happy about this round, particularly in these conditions. I made eight birdies and just two bogeys.  Yesterday one over was not so bad in that wind, but today I played really well, I felt comfortable and very solid, very consistent and I also made some important putts, so I’ll try to keep going like this.”

Simon  polished off  his 69 with a 12 foot putt for eagle, using his new belly putter;

“It appeared to bobble and I started walking, but it kept going and dropped.  I switched because I’ve just not been holing out well. It’s harder to get the pace, but I start it on the right line more consistently.”

Matteo was really very happy with his score, but thought he did not actually play that well;

“It wasn’t an easy day and I’m happy because I didn’t really play that well but managed to score.  Today I took the right side of the draw. Early morning we just had a little breeze and it’s certainly going to be more difficult in the afternoon. I didn’t play really well, but never put myself in serious trouble. I’ve scrambled well, I made some good up and downs at the beginning of my back nine, but the last four or five holes I started playing very good golf well and that gives me some confidence.  I’m really happy to be in contention, to be around the lead, and we shall see what happens.”

Notables missing the cut include; Michael Campbell, Alvaro Quiros, Rich Beam, Colin Montgomery, Paul Lawrie and amazingly Miguel Angel Jimenez, the Spaniard has never won his National title.

European Tour

                                                        

A competent five under par 67 saw former US PGA Championship winner Shaun Micheel enjoy a one shot lead after the opening round of the Reale Seguros Open de España. He has a one shot lead over home favourite Jorge Campillo and the English pair of Robert Rock and Danny Willett, and their compatriot Matthew Baldwin is alone in fifth on three under.

Micheel on the front foot

Shaun Micheel (Getty Images)

Shaun seemed surprised at his lead;

I didn’t expect this. Yesterday in the pro-am I didn’t make any birdies, and it wasn’t for lack of effort, I can assure you. I had a terrific start with four birdies on my first six holes. I think the key was I kept the ball in play, made a couple of nice putts, and I made all my short putts. My iron play was good and I just managed myself well and gave myself a lot of opportunities. Outside my bogey in the last, I’m extremely pleased. I made 8 birdies, it felt great, it really did. I’m ready to play tomorrow in the same conditions, I do enjoy playing in difficult conditions.”

Local favorite Jorge Campillo was also very pleased with his start to the tournament;

“I feel great playing this good. The course is playing tough and I managed to make no bogeys, so I’m very happy with the way I played today.”