Late bogeys cost Paul Dunne share of the lead in Morocco
Irish golfer two shots behind Gregory Havret ahead of the weekend action at Trophée Hassan II
Paul Dunne is two shots off the second round lead in Morocco. Photograph: Warren Little/Getty Images
Two late bogeys cost Paul Dunne a share of the halfway lead at the Trophee Hassan II in Morocco but the Irish golfer believes his game is in good shape going into the weekend action at Royal Golf Dar Es Salam.
Dunne opened with a level-par 73 but a four-under 69 on Friday put him in a share of fourth position, two shots off the lead held by Frenchman Gregory Havret.
A birdie at the second was the only gain on Dunne’s front nine as he turned in one-under 35. He started his homeward journey in brilliant style with an eagle-three on the par-five 10th and followed it with back-to-back birdies to get to five under with six holes to play.
A further birdie on the 15th looked set to propel Dunne to the top of the leaderboard, only for back-to-back bogeys on the 16th and 17th to slow his progress.
Dunne admitted it was far from an ideal ending to his day, but the 24-year old is looking forward to the weekend
“It’s disappointing to finish with a couple of bogeys but I got a couple of bad lies and things didn’t go my way at the end. But I’d have taken that score at the start of the day,” said Dunne.
“I’ve been playing well and yesterday I didn’t play well from tee to green but I managed to salvage a couple of late birdies but today I played better.
“I hit my driver straighter and I was striking my irons more solidly so I gave myself a lot of chances and I’m putting well.”
Havret shot a second straight round of 70 to move one stroke clear at the halfway point despite also finishing poorly, in his case with back-to-back bogeys.
Havret had shared the lead with three others after the opening 18 in Morocco and he was the only one of that quartet able to go that low again.
Denmark’s Lucas Bjerregaard, one of the joint leaders after the first round, and Trevor Fisher Jnr are one back while Dunne sits in a three-way share of fourth position alongside Havret’s fellow countryman Gregory Bourdy and England’s James Morrison.
Tom Lewis is in the group at three under having responded to Thursday’s 75 with a 68 that was only matched among the field by Benjamin Hebert, who is also three off Havret following a bogey-free second round.
Havret, whose last European Tour success came nine years ago, starts the weekend as the man to catch, a prospect that would look all the more difficult had he not finished on such a low note.
“It’s always a bit of a shame to finish like this - bogey, bogey,” he said.
“It’s obviously not the best but the rest was pretty good. This course is tough so you can’t avoid mistakes all day long.
“So far, so good. I’m quite happy with the way it’s been. I know more than anybody probably that the road is still long.”
Former champion Michael Hoey missed the cut by one shot after carding a level-par 73 to finish on three over.