Sun, 19 Jan 2003

Baddeley, Goosen share lead at Hawaii Open

Agencies, Honolulu, Hawaii

South Africa's Retief Goosen, who had shared the overnight lead, was joined at the top of the leaderboard by Australian Aaron Baddeley after the second round of the $4.5 million Hawaii Open on Friday.

Goosen carded a four-under-par 66 for a total of 130 while Baddeley fired a six-under 64 to finish on the same score, Reuters reported.

South African Ernie Els (65), Australian Peter Lonard (65) and American Chris DiMarco (66) were all one shot adrift on 131 with Japan's Shigeki Maruyama (66) another stroke back. American Briny Baird was alone on 133.

Goosen, who won last year's BellSouth Classic and the 2001 U.S. Open, started the day in style with three birdies in a row.

But his progress was stifled by the strong afternoon wind as he recorded only two more birdies and one bogey over the remaining 15 holes.

"The course was definitely playing tougher today," Goosen told reporters. "I suppose a 66 today was equal to a 64 yesterday."

He was fortunate on the last hole, the par-five 18th which borders the driving range on the left side. Goosen pulled his drive left and his ball was only a couple of feet from going out of bounds.

The 21-year-old Baddeley is familiar not only with playing in big tournaments, but with winning them against quality competition.

He has won three Australasian Tour events in his short career, including two Australian Opens. One of those Open titles came when he was an amateur.

In the process, Baddeley has beaten some of the best players in the world -- Greg Norman, Sergio Garcia, Robert Allenby and Colin Montgomerie.

In Johannesburg, South Africa, a birdie blitz helped Welshman Bradley Dredge to a 68 on Friday and a one-shot halfway lead in the Dunhill Championship, Agence France-Presse reported.

Dredge lies on 133 after two rounds at the Houghton Golf Club, one stroke ahead of English pair Richard Bland and Mark Roe.

Dane Anders Hansen and South African Richard Sterne are a shot further back after the field had to contend with heatwave conditions for the second consecutive day in an event co- sanctioned by the European and Sunshine Tours.

The six golfers on 136 include Belgian Nicolas Vanhootegem, whose eight-birdie 64 was the lowest round of the day, and local Trevor Immelman, winner of the South African Open last weekend after a playoff with Tim Clark.

Stephen Dodd, who shared the first-round lead with compatriot Dredge, slipped to a one-under 71, three strokes off the pace in the US$800,000 championship while defending champion Justin Rose of England fired a five-under-par 67.

In Auckland, New Zealand, Australian Chris Downes fired a three-under-par 69 to move two strokes clear of the field after the third round of the New Zealand Open on Saturday, Reuters reported.

Downes, who had shared the lead overnight with compatriot Alan Patterson, finished with a total of 206, 10 under par.

New Zealanders Mahal Pearce (69) and Gareth Paddison (70) were tied for second place on 208 with another home favorite, Michael Campbell, on 209 after a five-under 67.

American Darrell Kestner shared fifth position with Australian Wayne Grady on 210, one ahead of Japan's Kix Kawahara, New Zealand amateur Chris Johns, Australian Brendan Jones and Patterson.