Patrick Reed edged into a three-shot lead at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas on Thursday. — Photo cbssports.com
MIAMI — Patrick Reed edged into a three-shot lead at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas on Thursday as Tiger Woods bounced back into contention after a lacklustre opening round.
Former Masters champion Reed carded a second consecutive six-under-par 66 to finish the second round at 12 under for the tournament at Albany Golf Club.
After strong winds which buffeted the course on Wednesday, Reed was among several players who took advantage of less hostile conditions to post a low-scoring round.
The American started slowly, picking up two birdies over the front nine to reach the turn at two under for the round.
Back-to-back birdies on the 10th and 11th holes were followed by two more on 14 and 15, and although a bogey on the 16th followed, Reed recovered with a birdie on the last.
"I feel good," Reed said afterwards. "I feel like the game's a lot more clearer than it was earlier this year. I'm giving myself opportunities and the putter's working."
US Open champion Gary Woodland, who had shared the first round lead on Wednesday, posted a three-under-par 69 to finish the day alone in second place at nine under.
Sweden's Henrik Stenson and Spain's Jon Rahm shared third spot on eight under, four off the lead.
Stenson moved up the leaderboard after a five-under-par 67 while Rahm shot a six-under-par 66.
Tournament host Woods meanwhile came back strongly after his disappointing 72 on Wednesday, hitting a bogey-free 66.
Woods' round burst into life on the back nine, with the former world number one snaring an eagle three on the par-five 11th to launch his charge down the stretch.
Woods followed it with birdies on the 12th, 14th and 16th holes to finish on six under after 36 holes, six shots back from Reed.
"Yesterday was tough with the wind blowing, especially with the putts," Woods said. "But today was a little less windy, the ball was flying and I got after it.
Woods, who will captain and play for the United States at the Presidents Cup next week in Australia, is confident about his chances heading into the final two rounds.
"I didn't really do anything poorly today," he said. "I just want to keep creeping my way back. I'm right there.
"Few shots back but at least I've got a chance going into the weekend." AFP