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Wakefield Stays Ahead as Brovold Cards a 61 at Qualifying School Finals

Englishman Simon Wakefield posted his second consecutive round of three under par 69 to stay at the top of the tree on day two of The European Tour Qualifying School Finals, while Norway’s Lars Petter Brovold carded a sensational 11 under par 61 to equal the lowest ever score at the Finals.

Brovold started the week with a round of seven over par 79, but his fantastic second round effort over the New Course at San Roque Club saw him move from seven over at the beginning of the day to four under at the close of play – two adrift of Wakefield and just one shot behind Sweden’s Joakim Backstrom and Frenchman Francois Delamontagne.

The 25 year old Norwegian only turned professional two days ago, and he showed just what he is capable of with a birdie at the first hole, followed by a sensational four iron approach to just four feet at the par five second which he tapped in for eagle. Another three birdies meant Brovold went to the turn in six under par 30, and he picked up another shot on the 12th before storming to an eagle-birdie-birdie finish to post the lowest round of his golfing life and equal the lowest round ever recorded at the Finals - set by England's David Dixon at Emporda GC last season.

“I am very, very pleased – especially after shooting 79 yesterday,” said Brovold, who has come through every Stage of the 2004 Qualifying School. “I had shot 63 before in competition but this was the best round I have ever had.

“I didn’t believe that I was out of it yesterday because I had played well but it was just that the conditions were really tough. I just came out today knowing that I could do a lot better, which is what I did. I just kept hitting shot after shot and they were all good ones. There was no secret to today’s round as such, I just didn’t panic and stayed relaxed and knew that I could score a lot better than I had done yesterday. I made my putts today as well which was important – I only had 24 putts today.”

While Brovold went to both ends of the scoring spectrum over the opening two rounds at the Old and New Courses at San Roque, Wakefield was a model of consistency as he put together his second 69 in as many days. The 30 year old did not drop a single shot during round two, picking up birdies at the first, second and 17th before sinking a crucial 15 foot par putt on the 18th green to stay ahead of the chasing pack.

“It was another good day’s work,” he said. “I couldn’t have had a better start but the key is not to get too content with the situation, there are still 72 holes to go, it is a lot of work to do and there are a lot of goods players behind me capable of shoting low numbers so I just have to take my time and be patient.”

Backstrom and Delamontagne carded respective rounds of 68 and 67 to share second place. The Swede – like Brovold – has come through every Stage of the Qualifying School and admitted that he is thoroughly enjoying his experience at the Finals.

“I know that most of the guys that are here do not want to be here, but I think it brings the best out in me – I actually enjoy qualifying for some reason! I played very steadily out there today and when I made mistakes I scrambled well which was very important.”

Delamontagne is looking to secure his Card through the Qualifying School for the third time, having been to the Finals on four previous occasions and won a Card on half of them.

“I played very well today – I drove the ball and putted well so it was a good day,” said the Frenchman. “I got a little tired towards the end of the round but my putter saved me form dropping any shots in the last three holes. I have been to the Finals four times before and got my Card twice, so this event has been good for me over the last few years. This course is good for me as well because it is very long and my long game is the best part of my game. I have been solid off the tee for the past few months now and I am playing with a lot of confidence.”

Belgium’s Nicolas Colsaerts, Sweden’s Peter Gustafsson and Mark Mouland of Wales share fifth place after the second round at San Roque was completed an hour later than scheduled due to a lightning storm.

Courtesy of www.europeantour.com

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