Australia’s Wade Ormsby fired a sensational round of 65, which included a closing eagle, to take a one shot lead at the halfway stage of the SAINT-OMER Open presented by Neuflize OBC.
The 29 year old from Adelaide started the day on one under par, five strokes behind overnight leader Fredrik Andersson Hed of Sweden. But he defied windy afternoon conditions at Aa St Omer Golf Club in Lumbres, France, to rocket to the top of the leaderboard.
Ormsby sits on seven under par, one shot clear of England’s James Morrison, who followed his opening round of 67 with a solid 69.
Swede Christian Nilsson also carded a round of 69 to improve to five under par, with his compatriot Andersson Hed a further shot back on four under following a two over 73.
Ormsby chipped in for a three at the par five ninth, his final hole, to crown a superb round.
He said: “I stood on the ninth tee thinking about a birdie, so to chip in for eagle was a big bonus. It was a great finish to a very pleasing round. I haven’t struck the ball that well for a very long time, particularly on the back nine.
“When I stood on the practice ground and started hitting balls on Monday, I knew I was going to be in for a better week,” he added.
“My confidence started coming back, and all of a sudden the putts start dropping too. So instead of just chasing the cut line, you’re starting to chase the leaders instead. Now I am the leader by one, which is obviously a great position to be in.”
When asked how his second round compared to his efforts on the previous day, second placed Morrison said: “It was probably equally as good. The forecast was for wind, which did arrive, making an already tough course even tougher. So again I had to be patient, which I was.
“The only bogey I made was due to a plugged lie in the bunker. But to have only one bogey after 36 holes round here must mean I’m playing pretty well. So I’m very happy.”
Nilsson led for much of the day, before bogeying the 16th and 18th holes to slip back to five under par.
But the Swede was still upbeat, saying: “The most important thing is to stay patient. You’re going to make three puts and bogeys on this course, so you have to take the rough with the smooth.
“So far I’ve been able to stay patient. It’s difficult at times, but you’ve just got to knuckle down, keep working at it and hope for the best. Overall, I’m pretty happy with the way I’m playing.”
Nilsson’s fellow Swede Andersson Hed was less happy with his round, but was pleased still to be in contention.
He said: “I didn’t play particularly well, but it wasn’t a complete disaster. It was just one of those days when it doesn’t quite go your way, so in the end I wasn’t too unhappy with a 73. I got off to a bad start, and had to try to fight my way back.
“I got a shot back on the ninth, but then gave another one away with a really poor shot on the tenth. Then a bad decision on the 13th cost me another shot, but I got it back with two lovely shots on the next hole. So it was that kind of round, a bit up and down.”
England’s Adam Gee and Australians Adam Carolan and Andrew Tampion are tied for fifth on five under par, while Simon Wakefield fired a superb 66 to join José-Filipe Lima and Matthew Millar on two under.