Friday, 14 September 2018
Wu Ashun  (Getty Images)
Wu Ashun (Getty Images)

Wu Ashun carded an impressive round of 66 to open up a three-shot clubhouse lead on day two of the KLM Open at The Dutch.

The Chinese had opened with a bogey-free 64 on Thursday and while he dropped two shots in round two, an accompanying seven birdies moved him to 12 under ahead of England's Jonathan Thomson.

Thomson recently lost out in a play-off at the Made in Denmark and he brought that form with him to Spijk as he matched the lowest nine-hole total to par of the season.

The 22 year old made seven birdies after starting from the tenth to match Suttijet Kooratanapisan at the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open and Thorbjørn Olesen at the BMW International Open before coming home in level par for a 64.

England's Chris Wood birdied three of his first six holes in the afternoon to sit alongside Thomson.

Like Thomson, David Drysdale is battling to preserve his playing privileges for next season and the Scot carded a bogey-free 65 to sit at eight under.

South Korea's Soomin Lee was then at seven under after birdieing four of his last five holes in a 67.

Wu is a two-time winner on the European Tour but needed the Access List to keep his card last season, and this is his best 36-hole score to par by three shots.

The 33 year old started the day with a one-shot advantage and with none of the very early starters making a big move, quickly extended it to three with birdies on the first and second.

That lead had been cut to two by the turn but it was two of the men three back who would initially set about reeling Wu in - playing partner Drysdale and the surging Thomson.

Drysdale turned in 31 with birdies on the fourth, fifth, seventh and eighth, while Thomson holed a 40-footer on the tenth and then made another three gains in a row from the 12th to join him at seven under.

Wu and Drysdale both birdied the tenth but when Thomson extended his run to six on the 15th, 16th and 17th, the lead was down to one.

Thomson found the hazard off the tee on the first and Wu rolled home from just off the 12th green to re-establish his three-shot cushion, with Drysdale picking up a shot on the 14th to get into a share of second.

A Thomson approach to eight feet on the second coupled with a Wu bogey on the 15th cut the lead back to one but Wu bounced back with an excellent tee-shot into the 16th and an 18-foot left-to-righter on the 17th.

An excellent battle was developing and while Thomson got on the sixth in two and put his approach to three feet on the next to once again trim the advantage, a bogey-bogey finish left Wu in command.

Lee, meanwhile, had been well off the pace with a birdie on the fourth and a bogey on the sixth but his four gains in a row from the 14th - including a chip-in on the 16th - catapulted him up the leaderboard.

Italy's Renato Paratore had a single birdie in his first seven holes to sit at six under, a shot ahead of Scot Neil Bradley, England's Ashley Chesters and Jordan Smith, Australian Andrew Dodt, Welshman Bradley Dredge, German Major champion Martin Kaymer and South Korean Jeunghun Wang.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1WU, AshunCHN18-16
2WOOD, ChrisENG18-15
T3DETRY, ThomasBEL18-14
T3TANIHARA, HidetoJPN18-14
5HARRINGTON, PadraigIRL18-13

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