Friday 24 March 2017

Reavie's birdie blitz secures Illinois lead

Chez Reavie shot to the top of the leaderboard after a second-round 62 at the John Deere Classic in Illinois.

The American, who shot a first-round 66, had an eagle at the second hole which was immediately followed by two birdies.

Reavie sunk nine birdies in all but had two bogeys to finish on 14-under, two strokes ahead of Steve Marino.

"The putter's been great, and that's been the key," the 29-year-old said after totalling only 21 putts.

Reavie, whose only PGA Tour victory came at the 2008 Canadian Open, conceded that he began thinking about a 59 after recording his ninth birdie of the day at the par-three seventh, his 16th hole.

"That's when I thought, 'I make two more birdies, I shoot 59'. And then I hit it up there to about 10 feet on the eighth hole, hit a great putt and it lipped out," he said.

Marino remains second after a round of 66 that included an eagle on the second, a bogey on the fifth and four birdies to move to 12-under-par.

Jhonattan Vegas moved up to third after a 64 as he looks for his second Tour win.

The Venezuelan sunk seven birdies, including three in a row from the second hole, to finish on 10-under after improving on his first-round 68.

Kirk Triplett also improved on his first round when he carded a 65 to move into a five-way share for fourth.

The American putted eight birdies, including five in the first seven holes, as well as two bogeys to move to nine-under par.

Alongside him is Arjun Atwal, who carded a 66, including six birdies and a bogey along with Billy Mayfair, John Mallinger and David Mathis after rounds of 66, 65 and 65 respectively.

Overnight leader Kris Blanks had a poor day, with a round of 71 sending him down to a tie for ninth.

The American had a woeful start with a double-bogey at the first hole, while four birdies were offset by two more bogeys, and he is now six shots behind leader Reavie.

John Deere Classic,

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Irish Independent

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