Brian Davis and Greg Owen moved into a share of the lead as the second round of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans was delayed due to lightning at TPC Louisiana today.
The English pair, both based in Florida and playing the US PGA Tour full-time, had advanced to seven under par for the week alongside Germany’s Alex Cejka, American veteran Lee Janzen and first-round leader Jason Bohn, who was waiting to get his second round under way following an opening, seven-under 65.
Davis, runner-up last week to Jim Furyk at the Verizon Heritage having called a penalty on himself during a sudden death play-off, continued his good form with a six-under-par 66 at the 7,340-yard course in Avondale, near New Orleans.
After an opening, one-under 71 and playing the back nine first, Davis went birdie-bogey-birdie-par-bogey to start his round before a four at the par-five 18th started a 10-hole run that saw seven birdies go down for the 35-year-old Londoner, chasing his first win in the US and a first title since the 2004 ANZ Championship on the European Tour.
“Yesterday was tough. The wind was up and, with the hangover of last week, anything under par would have been good yesterday,” Davis said.
“I holed a putt at the last for one under and was really happy with that.
“I went out today and nothing was really happening... and then just caught fire. I hit some close shots, made a couple of good putts and had a great back nine.”
Owen had opened with a 67 and was bogey-free in his second round, two under for the day as he waited to play the 18th when the hooter sounded to signal the suspension in play.
As the delay continued into a second hour and with 38 players still to tee off, the second round looked unlikely to be completed today, with rain also forecast tomorrow.
Janzen had already carded a bogey-free 66 while Cejka’s 67 was marred only by a bogey at the par-three 17th, his penultimate hole.
One shot back on the early second-round leaders and in the clubhouse was Australia’s Greg Chalmers, who shot a 68 that included an eagle at the par-five 11th. His compatriot Jarrod Lyle was at six under after 14 holes – four under for his round and with two eagles, three birdies and three bogeys already on his card.
Also at six under was former Open champion David Duval, chasing a 14th career victory and his first since lifting the claret jug at Lytham and St Annes in 2001.
Duval, who was a runner-up earlier in the season at Pebble Beach and shot an opening 68 in New Orleans, had reached the fourth with birdies at the second and third holes before his round was interrupted.
Argentina’s Andres Romero, the 2008 champion, moved up the leaderboard with a second-round 68 to get to halfway at four under alongside US Ryder Cup player Boo Weekley, who had a 70 and Korean KJ Choi, who shot a 72.
Sweden’s Daniel Chopra (70) and England’s Justin Rose were at two under, Rose carding a level-par 72 including four birdies, two bogeys and a double bogey.
But Sergio Garcia of Spain put a poor first-round 73 behind him to shoot a 69 and put himself inside the projected cut line, which stood at one under when play was suspended.
Among those on the wrong side were Swede Richard S Johnson, at level par with his second round yet to start, and former Masters champion Mike Weir of Canada, facing a weekend off after a 72 left him stuck on four over par.