Frenchman Alexandre Kaleka fired a six under par 66 to take the lead in the second round of the Rolex Trophy in Switzerland.
The 23 year old racked up four consecutive birdies on the back nine, his front nine, before three more in a row from the fifth to reach 11 under for the tournament. He leads Swede Pelle Edberg and Norway’s Marius Thorp by one shot.
“I’m very pleased to have two rounds back to back like this,” said Kaleka, who won on his Challenge Tour debut last year at the ALLIANZ EurOpen de Lyon. “I played in this event last year which helps because I’m used to the format and know the course. I’m hitting the ball very nicely and I hope I can continue to do so for the next two rounds.”
The Rolex Trophy is played in a pro-am format, where each professional plays with a junior amateur in the first round, then with a group of three amateurs for the next three rounds. It is one of the most competitive events on the Challenge Tour schedule as only the top 40 from the Rankings are in the field, plus two invitations, and the prize fund is €218,000.
Kaleka added: “I was lucky to have three good guys in my group today who all played very well which kept the rhythm going. Sometimes it is hard if you play with someone who is struggling as it’s difficult to maintain momentum.
“Since my win last year I’ve had quite a few top tens and top fives but not won, so it would be great to this week.”
Edberg, chasing his maiden Challenge Tour victory, had a mixed round with three bogeys and five birdies but was happy overall.
“If you told me at the start of the week I’d be ten under after two rounds I would definitely have taken that,” he said. “I had a pretty rough start but then a birdie at the fifth got me going a bit. I’m hitting really good tee shots which means I don’t have very far for my second shots but I’m not taking advantage enough. It was nice to finish with two birdies though.
“But when you are out there and playing well it feels like you should be scoring better. I enjoyed it though. I played with three good guys and it was pretty relaxed and good fun."
Edberg’s compatriot Magnus Carlsson would have had a share for second place but finished with a double bogey six. He said: “It’s pretty disappointing to finish with a double, especially as I had played really well until that point. But that’s golf.”
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