Stenson fighting to defend title
SERGIO GARCIA and Henrik Stenson are a shot off the lead at Munich’s BMW International Open with two days to play. Stenson is defending the title he won in Cologne three weeks before his maiden major triumph at The Open last year and Garcia is playing in Europe for the first time since winning the Masters in April. The Ryder Cup duo go into the halfway stage at eight under in windy conditions but that was not good enough to keep pace with Frenchman Joel Stalter and Swede Joakim Lagergren, who lead the way. Lagergren set the target in the morning with a strong 66 and rookie Stalter was the only one of the later starters who could catch him as he posted a 68. Garcia shared the lead at the turn after a birdie hat-trick from the seventh but dropped shots on the 14th and 17th stalled his momentum. He finished on 70 but Stenson went one better with birdies on the 11th, 18th, first and eighth and a single blemish on the 13th. ‘I’m not on top of my game but it was a good professional fighting display,’ Stenson said. ‘We kept it tidy, made a couple of birdies and didn’t drop too many.’ England’s Richard Bland was also at eight under alongside Belgian Thomas Detry and Swede Rikard Karlberg. ‘I’m in a good position,’ Bland said. ‘I should, hopefully, be in there come Sunday.’ Matthew Southgate was in the group at seven under, a shot clear of fellow Englishman Tommy Fleetwood, who came fourth at last week’s US Open.