George surges into PGA Championship contention

PGA Championship - Round TwoGeorge Coetzee recorded a stunning 65 on day two at Whistling Straits to move into contention at the US PGA Championship.

The South African, who has two European Tour wins so far this season at the Tshwane Open and AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open, opened with a 74 but went nine shots better second time round to sit two shots behind leader David Lingmerth who was seven under after 14 holes of his round.

He opened with two birdies and recorded two in a row again at the fifth and sixth before blotting his copy book with a bogey on the ninth.

That did not halt his momentum, however, and he picked up two further shots on the 10th and 11th before putting his second shot on the par five 16th to five feet and claiming an eagle.

“The eagle was pretty nice,” he said. “I had two-iron in from 260 and I just kind of visualized it and it happened exactly the way I kind of had it pictured in my mind. And those kind of shots don’t happen like that that often.”

A seventh birdie of the day followed on the 17th but after he found the sand and had to chip out on the last, he finished with a bogey.

After his opening 74, this round was just the tonic Coetzee needed. “Yesterday it was quite difficult,” he said. “Didn’t play that badly, but the wind was blowing quite strong and I was hitting two-iron into 18, and so it definitely wasn’t easy yesterday.

“But today was, like you could see, there were¬†more birdies to be had out there. The guys are definitely not hanging back like they did yesterday. Yesterday I think half the day they had my name on the scoreboard at one-under for the afternoon field and I was like, well, you guess that’s pretty good.

“Today the putts just went in. I feel like I figured something out with the putting stroke and the putting feels much better than it did the last couple of weeks and that I guess makes a big difference in ball striking and every aspect of your game. If you know you’re going to make the putts, then you can play a bit more conservative when you have to and you don’t take the silly chances.”

With reporting from The European Tour

 

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