Horsey cantering ahead in Moscow

OFF COURSE: Damien McGrane blasts out of a bunker at the 15th in yesterday's second round of the M2M Russian Open  in Moscow. Picture: Getty Images

David Horsey recovered from a shaky start to extend his overnight lead to four shots after the second round of the Russian Open in Moscow.

Late birdies on Thursday had given Horsey a one-shot lead after a round of 65, but — having started on the 10th hole yesterday — bogeys on the 12th and 13th saw him relinquish that advantage.

But he birdied the 14th, 17th and 18th to recover and, after bogeying the first, he picked up four more shots over his final six holes to sign for a 68 to sit on 11 under at halfway.

That puts him two shots clear of Thomas Pieters, who also carded a 68 yesterday, with Scotland’s Peter Whiteford a further two shots back after a double-bogey on the 15th meant he could do no better than a 71.

Ireland’s Kevin Phelan is on 139, six behind Horsey after a 70 yesterday with Damien McGrane one shot further back after a 71. Simon Thornton also made the cut on 143 but David Higgins failed to make it.

“I got off to a slow start but I managed to bounce back well,” Horsey said. “I tried to do the same as yesterday and stick to my game and not worry about much else. Dropping a couple of shots early on is always disappointing, but I knew there’d be plenty of chances to come and I just needed to stay patient and keep giving myself putts for birdie.”

Although his double-bogey could yet prove costly, Whiteford was happy to still be in contention after eight consecutive missed cuts.

“The start was shocking,” he said. “The first tee shot was straight in the rubbish, and I was four over after five holes. But it was a good fightback. Strangely, I felt like I was swinging it better today, but there are still some absolutely wild ones in there which cost me today. The good shots are really good, but there’s some calamities.

“Even that shot to the last there — it was an easy nine iron and I just hooked it into the bunker. It makes it exciting though — I don’t really know where to look once I’ve struck it! I’m not playing great so I’m delighted with the way I’m scoring and I’m in with a chance, which is just what I need.”

Whiteford ended up in a tie for third alongside England’s Gary Boyd, who catapulted himself up the leaderboard with two late birdies, moving ahead of a four-way tie for fourth.

That group included Scotland’s Scott Jamieson, whose round of par 72 was six shots off the pace he set on Thursday.


Lifestyle

FOR many of us, health insurance is high on the list of financial products which that we tend to avoid changing out of fear and confusion.Money and Cents: cover all the bases for best health insurance

Anya Taylor-Joy plays the titular Emma in the latest adaptation of Jane Austen’s romantic comedy about the spoilt, meddling matchmaker who means well, says Laura HardingAnya Taylor-Joy: ‘Emma is my little monster’

Setting sail to travel the world as part of your job has a romance all of its own but for marketing manager Máire Cronin and engineer Mark Crowe it led to love.Wedding of the Week: Cruise ship co-workers Máire and Mark sail off into sunset

One of the genres that has seen exponential growth in the podcast world is the sleepcast. Open Spotify on your phone in the evening and a number of offerings are available, writes Eoghan O'SullivanThe Podcast Corner: podcasts that will put you to sleep

More From The Irish Examiner