Day Two at the DP World Tour Championship is in the books and things really heated up. Perfect playing conditions, no wind, generous fairways and receptive greens created a jammed up leader board. Here’s what transpired at the Earth Course of the Jumeirah Golf Estates on Friday:
Defending champion Matthew Fitzpatrick showed why he won the tournament last year. He shot a second straight 67 and claimed the 36-hole lead with a 10-under par total.
Tyrrell Hatton was staring at a possible course record when he came to the 18th at 10-under par for his round. Sadly, he bogeyed the closing par five for a nine-under par 63. He’s alone at nine-under, a shot behind his countryman, Fitzpatrick, and sighed afterward: “That hole hates me.”
Justin Rose looked like he’d claim a share of the lead. He was nine-under par for the championship and hit a perfect drive at the 18th, leaving himself a tad more than 250 yards to the hole. Alas, he fanned a three-wood, missed the green wide right, hit an unimpressive third and then proceeded to three-putt for a bogey six from 20 feet to ruin an otherwise decent day. He’s at eight-under going into the weekend after a round of 70.
American Julian Suri joined Rose at eight-under as did Kiradech Aphibarnrat. Suri has a pair of 68s while Aphibarnrat’s 67 got him into the group that is two back of the leader.
First round leader Patrick Reed had issues off the tee most of the day. He managed to scramble quite well and found himself in good position — nine-under with just three holes to play. Unfortunately, he bogeyed the 16th and 18th to shoot even par and finish the day where he started — seven-under.
John Rahm spent most of his day chasing away the hand-held television cameras. When he wasn’t venting on those guys, he hit enough good shots to shoot 68 and join Reed at seven-under.
Race To Dubai points leader Tommy Fleetwood bounced back nicely from his opening 73. Fleetwood put up the day’s second-best round — a seven-under par 65 and he’s just four off the lead going into the weekend with momentum on his side.
Sergio Garcia, third in the points race, shot 69 and is five-under, five back of Fitzpatrick. He has to win on Sunday to win the Race To Dubai.