Fri, Jan 24, 2014 - Page 20 News List

Coetzee holds on to lead in Qatar; Webster second

AFP, DOHA

South Africa’s George Coetzee continued to hold on to his one-shot lead midway through the second round of the US$2.5 million Qatar Masters at the Doha Golf Club yesterday.

In search of his first title — he has three second-place finishes so far — Coetzee shot a 69 for an 11-under total to stay ahead of England’s Steve Webster, who had recorded a sensational albatross on his first hole on Wednesday.

Webster matched Coetzee’s 69 in the second round to remain in second spot on 10-under-par, with Thomas Aiken, another South African pushing for the title, in third place a further shot down.

A bunch of five players, including the US’ John Daly, were a shot behind on eight-under.

Coetzee, the runner-up in Qatar last year, thought he was lucky to keep his nose ahead as he dropped four shots, which included a double-bogey six on the 474m 11th hole, his second.

However, Webster’s record albatross on Wednesday continued to be the talking point in Doha, with many wondering if he could repeat the feat on the same hole in the second round.

The Englishman, too, admitted that the thought of an encore had been playing on his mind although he eventually had to settle for a birdie.

“I had perfect yardage again, but I pulled it a bit and ended up 40 feet away. It was on my mind,” he said after his round, which was blighted by three bogeys.

Meanwhile, Daly rolled back the years with a calm 69 to go with his first-round 67.

Without a title for the past 10 years, the colorful American eschewed his trademark flamboyant play for a bogey-free round.

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