Apr 9, 2015; Augusta, GA, USA; Victor Dubuisson hits out of a bunker on the 7th hole during the first round of The Masters golf tournament at Augusta National Golf Club. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports
Going into the 2nd round of the BMW PGA Championship there’s considerable focus on the road-weary world’s number 1. Can Rory McIlory (a) control his temper, and (b) catch Francisco Molinari? We’ll have the answers to those questions later today, but on down the leaderboard there are some other interesting activities I don’t want to overlook while I wait for the McIlory drama to unfold.
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Sure, McIlroy got angry and threw another club yesterday, his 3-wood this time rather than the 3-iron he launched into the lake at Doral in March at the WGC-Cadillac Championship. And sure, as Golfweek’s Alistair Tate reports, he’s likely going to be fined by the European Tour’s tournament committee when it meets next week at the Irish Open for failing to “comply with normally accepted standards of courtesy and golf etiquette.”
It’s tempting to pause here and reflect on the failures of other golfers to comply with normally accepted standards of courtesy and golf etiquette, but I’ll save that digression for another post.
Let’s set McIlroy’s little lapse in anger management aside and just take a look at the leaderboard.
McIlroy carded a 1st round 71, which put him well down the leaderboard and faced with chasing what’s shaping up to be quite a big stretch to Molinari’s growing lead. Early in his 2nd round, Francesco Molinari is playing like a man on fire! McIlroy, however, is not.
Molinari’s challenge may come from an unanticipated direction because two fine young French players, Alexander Levy and Victor Dubuisson, are lurking around in a 10th place logjam. ProGolfNow has been following this pair for a year or more as they’ve steadily played their way into contention on both sides of the Atlantic. One or both of them may be poised to take a run at the top of the board at Wentworth.
Levy’s 3-under par, if he holds on to it through the end of his round, will take him into the weekend even with Branden Grace, Shane Lowery and Nicholas Colsaerts, not bad company to keep this weekend.
Dubuisson, who’s early in his round as I’m writing this post, started the 2nd round one shot back of Levy, but he’s even with Levy at 3-under and on the 8th hole, so if he can maintain his pace and take advantage of his opportunities I’m looking for Dubuisson to go into the weekend with a solid peek at the top of the board.
McIlroy, on the other hand, is going the wrong direction and flirting with the cut line; and Lee Westwood and Richie Ramsay may get to join Padraig Harrington and take the weekend off.