Jimenez sparks, Tiger steady, but Johnson lurks in Open
SPANIARD Miguel Angel Jimenez took the clubhouse lead on three under par and Tiger Woods ground out a second-round 71 to stay right in the mix on a congested British Open leaderboard yesterday.
American Woods, pictured, the world nNo 1, made two birdies and two bogeys on the front nine and sank a 10foot putt on the final green to finish on two under par along with Briton Lee Westwood and Swede Henrik Stenson.
Argentina’s Angel Cabrera led the field on four under after nine holes and overnight leader Zach Johnson was four under after 14, the late starters battling fresh winds and parched fairways and greens on the East Lothian links.
Woods collected birdies at the third and fifth holes but bogeys on the fourth, eighth and 11th halted his charge and the American waved his putter in frustration after wasting a birdie chance at the 12th.
He maintained his concentration, however, to par the next six holes and a fine approach shot set up a birdie on the last which he celebrated with a trademark fist pump.
“Towards the middle part of my round I lost the pace and was blowing it past the hole,” Woods told reporters. “But finally got it fixed at the end. Just got to continue plodding along. Continue just being patient, putting the ball in the right spots and trying.
“We’re not going to get a lot of opportunities out there but when I have I’ve been able to capitalise.”
Jimenez, 49, followed his opening 68 with a level-par 71, the cigar-loving Spaniard drawing on all his experience to mix two birdies with two bogeys in a rock-steady round.
Westwood, seeking a long overdue first Major championship, took advantage of a hot putter to pick up six birdies over the first 12 holes.
He briefly moved to five under but had to settle for a round of 68 after three bogeys over the closing stretch.
“I was pleased to be five under through 12,” said Westwood. “It was just getting harder as the holes progressed, tougher to score, tougher to get it close.”
Of the South Africans likely to make the cut, the best with a completed round were Charl Schwartzel on one over, Branden Grace on three over and Ernie Els on five over. On the closing holes were Tim Clark and George Coetzee on four over par, and Richard Sterne on seven over. – Reuters