Sun, Sep 07, 2008 - Page 18 News List

Defending champ Rumford shoots 67 to catch McIlroy

AFP , CRANS-SUR-SIERRE, SWITZERLAND

Defending champion Brett Rumford of Australia carded a second successive 67 to join first round leader Rory McIlroy at the top of the European Masters leaderboard on Friday.

Rumford reached 8-under, while Northern Ireland teenager McIlroy, who hit a 63 on Thursday to open up a three-shot overnight lead, managed a level par 71 on Friday.

It left both players with a share of the second round lead, but Alejandro Canizares, Jean-Francois Lucquin and Juan Abbate are just a shot back at seven-under.

Rumford birdied three of his first five holes, grabbed two more early on the front nine, but bogeyed the par-four fourth like McIlroy and parred his way in from there.

The 19-year-old McIlroy had stretched his lead to four with an opening birdie, but although he chipped in on the eighth and added a further birdie at the long 14th there were also three bogeys on his card.

Only South Africa’s Dale Hayes and Spain’s Seve Ballesteros have won at a younger age than McIlroy.

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