George Murray found golfing enlightenment to move to the top of the Scottish Hydro Challenge leaderboard at the Macdonald Spey Valley Golf Course.
Inspired by his recent discovery of the book ‘Zen Golf’, Murray freed his mind to compile a second round 67 and move to eight under par for the tournament, giving the 27 year old a one shot lead over Swede Magnus Carlsson, Germany’s Christophe Günther and England’s Lee Slattery going onto the weekend of the €200,000 event in the Scottish Highlands.
Italian star Matteo Manassero fired a level par 71 to remain in touch with the leaders on four under, while his playing partners – Challenge Tour Number One Rob Dinwiddie and defending champion Jami McLeary – are respectively five and three under with 36 holes still to play.
Murray’s second round included five birdies and a single bogey as he strode through the field to take the lead. After his round he revealed how his new attitude is, in the main, down to Dr Jo Parent’s book, ‘Zen Golf’, a work designed to eliminate the negative thoughts that plague golfers of every ability.
“I have been playing a lot better – I think it is just the mental approach and I have become a lot more relaxed. I have been reading some books in an attempt to chill myself out and it is helping,” said Murray.
“The best one is Zen Golf which is brilliant. When you read it you just come away thinking that every shot has no relevance, so when I am standing over a four-footer I know that it’s not important and if I miss it then it is not the end of the world.
“I am just going to go out tomorrow, hit it, find it and go round in as few stokes as possible. I don’t really think about winning, I just want to let it happen. Obviously we have all dreamt of winning but I am only half way there so there is a long way to go. I don’t want to put any unnecessary pressure on myself. That’s the Zen Golf talking!”
Argentina’s Joaquin Estevez, England’s Jamie Moul and Chilean Mark Tullo share fifth place on six under par, the Scottish duo of Chris Doak and Scott Jamieson joined Dinwiddie, Sweden’s Oskar Floren, Frenchmen François Calmels and Charles-Edouard Russo as well as Norwegian Marius Thorp on five under.
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