Brazil's Priscillo Diniz remained on course to win a second successive SSL International Sodexho European Seniors Match Play Championship, presented by the Daily Telegraph, when he defeated a battling David Good 2 & 1 during the second round of this year's Championship at the Meridien Penina Golf Resort in Portugal.
The Brazilian also extended an impressive 100 percent professional match play record which began when he emerged undefeated while representing his country in three successive South African Team Championships, was perpetuated when he overcame Tommy Horton, Bernard Gallacher, David Creamer, Ross Metherell and Ian Stanley on his way to last year's title and now has been extended with wins over Good and Russell Weir this week.
Against Good, the diminutive Brazilian, who won this year’s Royal Westmoreland Barbados Open, went one ahead when he birdied the 428 yard par four second. He extended that lead with another birdie on the 410 yard 12th and then parred home to win 2 & I.
"It was a solid performance," said Diniz, who now faces David Oakley in the third round. "It is always nice to get round without dropping a shot but I knew I would have to play well because Goody is always hard to beat."
Stanley, the current leader on the Seniors Tour Order of Merit and the man who lost to Diniz in last year's final, also battled through to the third round after a tight match with England's David Creamer.
The Australian took the early initiative when he won the first two holes, but was pegged back to one up on four occasions before he made the decisive move with birdies on both the 393 yard 14th and the 331 yard 15th. Creamer, a former English table tennis international, kept the match alive with a pitch and a putt for a par on the 215 yard par three 16th but lost when Stanley matched his birdie four on the long 17th.
Stanley, who won De Vere PGA Seniors Championship and the Senior British Open earlier this season, now faces another Englishman, Jim Rhodes, who defeated Ireland’s Denis O’Sullivan by a similar margin.
In the other half of the draw, England’s Peter Dawson, the only left-hander ever to represent Europe in the Ryder Cup, defeated America’s Jeff Van Wagenen 4 & 3 and will now meet Jamaica’s Delroy Cambridge, who beat Canada’s Bill Hardwick at the 19th hole.
Welshman, Craig Defoy, the club pro at Coombe Hill in Surrey, also progressed with a narrow one hole victory over Northern Ireland’s Paul Leonard and now comes face to face with America’s Jerry Bruner.
Bruner, who is still searching for his first European Seniors Tour title after notching no less than nine second place finishes, was in majestic form, producing 12 pars and five birdies in the 17 holes he needed to defeat England’s Denis Durnian 2 & 1.
Arguably the unluckiest man in the field was England’s Tommy Horton, who lost on the first extra hole to David Oakley, this year’s Energis Seniors and Scottish Seniors champion.
Horton, who is still searching for his first victory of the 2001 season, opened well, moving to two up after birdies on the fifth and the seventh. He fell one behind when his American opponent secured three successive birdies from the 10th but then went one ahead again with a par on the 210-yard 13th and another regulation par three on the 215yard 16th hole.
On the 547 yard par five 18th, Horton seemed destined to hold onto the initiative when he hit a solid drive down the left but his second shot plugged into the back face of the left-hand greenside bunker, leaving him with next to no chance of finding the green.
From there, in fact, he did well to escape at all, running over the green into another trap, ultimately running up a bogey six.
Worse was to follow on the 19th. After driving into a ditch and taking a penalty drop, Horton could only move his third shot about 75 yards down the fairway. He also missed the green with his fourth shot before conceding the hole and the match to Oakley.