Wolff maintains lead despite tough second round at Mayakoba

By Sports Desk November 05, 2021

Matthew Wolff could not duplicate the career-best form he showed in the opening round of the World Wide Technology Championship at Mayakoba on Friday, but he remains atop the leaderboard entering the weekend. 

Wolff carded a 68 in the second round to sit at 13 under par for the tournament at El Camaleon Golf Club, bogeying two of the last three holes after posting a flawless 61 Thursday. 

The 22-year-old American holds a two-stroke lead on countryman Scottie Scheffler (64), with home-crowd favourite Carlos Ortiz (65) and defending champion Viktor Hovland (65) three back at 10 under.

Sergio Garcia (69) and Justin Thomas (65) are among 10 players at nine under for the tournament. 

"It was a hard finish, but I was really happy with how I played today," Wolff said. "Felt like it was pretty difficult this afternoon, honestly. 

"Following a round like I had yesterday, it’s not always easy to come out and keep on making birdies and glad I proved to myself that I could do it. I put myself in a really good spot, so I’m excited for the week."

Further down the leaderboard, Justin Rose (70) is at five under, with Rickie Fowler (72), Charl Schwartzel (69), Patrick Reed (65) and Keegan Bradley (67) among those just making the cut at four under. 

On the wrong side of the line were Ian Poulter (73) at three under, Luke Donald (67) and Shane Lowry (69) at two under and Brooks Koepka (71) at even par. 

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    Scottie Scheffler leads the Charles Schwab Challenge by two strokes coming into the final round, shooting a two-under 68 in Saturday's third round.

    The world number one sits at 11-under coming into the final 18 holes at Colonial, after facing tricky conditions with intense heat and heavy wind gusts.

    After posting bogey-free rounds on Thursday and Friday, Scheffler almost made it three rounds in a row but three-putted the par-four 17th for bogey.

    He bounced right back with a long birdie putt on the 18th to close out the round on two-under, leading Brendon Todd and Scott Stallings on nine-under.

    After missing the cut last weekend at the US PGA Championship, his first cut since his season start in October, the Masters champion could win his fifth PGA Tour title on Sunday.

    Those five wins would come from a phenomenal 10 starts, after taking out the Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale in February, and would emulate Tom Watson's 1980 feat of five wins before the start of June.

    Harold Varner III is in the running for his maiden PGA Tour victory, sitting a further stroke back from Todd and Stallings on eight-under after three rounds, also shooting a two-under 68 on Saturday.

    John Huh, Cam Davis, Chris Kirk and Patrick Reed share a four-way tie for fourth on seven-under.

    Also shooting a third-round score of 68 was Mito Pereira, finishing strong with three birdies over the closing five holes, including a long 15-metre putt to secure a birdie on the 18th.

    Pereira is coming off his dramatic collapse on the final hole at the PGA Championship last weekend, missing the playoff between Justin Thomas and Will Zalatoris.

    Both Thomas and Zalatoris have gone on from that performance at Southern Hills to miss the cut this weekend in Fort Worth.

  • Scottie Scheffler stays bogey-free through 36 holes for share of lead at Charles Schwab Challenge Scottie Scheffler stays bogey-free through 36 holes for share of lead at Charles Schwab Challenge

    World number one Scottie Scheffler remained in a tie for the lead after his second consecutive bogey-free round at the Charles Schwab Challenge, going one stroke better than his Thursday 66 to sit at nine under.

    Scheffler's 65 was one shot off the round of the day, and he did it with back-to-back birdies on holes one and two, before also making gains at 10, 12 and 17 down the back nine.

    Fellow round one leader Beau Hossler matched Scheffler again – but after two eagles on par-fours in his first round, he did it in much more traditional fashion this time around, also going bogey-free with five birdies.

    Joining that pair atop the leaderboard was Scott Stallings, one of two players to shoot Friday's best score of 64, along with New Zealand's Danny Lee, who improved to sit six off the lead after a 73 on Thursday.

    Speaking to Golf Channel after stepping off the 18th green, Scheffler said improvements he has made this season are paying off after traditionally struggling at Colonial Country Club.

    "I've worked really hard, just creating a lot of different shots for myself," he said.

    "This golf course is a lot about the approach play, and at first it didn't suit my eye, but I've really changed and improved my iron play and created a lot of different shots for myself, and it looks like the hard work is paying off here.

    "I think I like it when the conditions are really hard, I'd rather it be very difficult than very easy.

    "I feel like it's one of those things where if you're playing really good golf you can kind of extend yourself, so I'm excited for the challenges this weekend."

    Patrick Reed sat one stroke back from the lead, alone at eight under after his second 66 of the week, with fellow Americans Pat Perez and Chris Kirk rounding out the top five at seven under.

    Next came a five-man group at six under consisting of Americans Max McGreevy, Harold Varner III and Davis Riley, with Australian Cam Davis and Norway's Viktor Hovland.

    Pre-tournament favourite Jordan Spieth, Webb Simpson and John Huh stood at five under, while Mito Pereira headlined the logjam at four under, still in the mix after his capitulation at the US PGA Championship last weekend.

    Max Homa finished three strokes inside the cut line at two under, while Tony Finau and Rickie Fowler were at one under, and Im Sung-jae was one inside the line at even par.

    Collin Morikawa and Talor Gooch made the weekend on the number, finishing at one over, while the US PGA Championship playoff pairing of Will Zalatoris and Justin Thomas were both at three over, out of the hunt this time.

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    World number one Scottie Scheffler was part of an eight-man group atop the leaderboard after the first round of the Charles Schwab Challenge, played at Colonial Country Club in Texas.

    Scheffler, who shot a bogey-free 66 despite only hitting 50 per cent of the fairways in regulation, was joined by fellow Americans Harold Varner III, Chris Kirk, Beau Hossler, Patrick Reed and Webb Simpson, as well as Canadian Nick Taylor and Australian Cam Davis.

    Hossler produced the most notable round, with two eagles – both coming on par-fours – in his last four holes to fly up the leaderboard.

    One shot off the lead were a group including Davis Riley and Kevin Na, while pre-tournament favourite Jordan Spieth was back at one under, tied with Victor Hovland and Max Homa.

    Spieth, who is from Texas, has an impeccable record at Colonial, with seven top-10 finishes – including three runners-up and a win – from nine starts on the PGA Tour.

    Speaking to the media after finishing his round, Spieth said he is battling his putter at the moment but that he is confident things will turn in his favour.

    "I think I'm typically more comfortable with reads here, although today here was totally different, I misread a number of putts today," he said.

    "But I stroked it beautifully, I just felt great about the way I putted, I just didn't get much to go.

    "Those are the kind of rounds where you can either look at it negatively, or you can say at it like 'hey, that lid is going to come off one of these times, and all of a sudden they're all going to pour in'.

    "It's done that for me [previously] at Colonial, so I think that's the attitude I'm going to take."

    At even par were a strong international group including Chile's US PGA Championship main character Mito Pereira, Colombia's Sebastian Munoz, England's Ian Poulter, American Collin Morikawa and the South Korean duo of Lee Kyoung-hoon and Im Sung-jae.

    PGA Championship winner Justin Thomas was at one over, while his playoff opponent last week Will Zalatoris was a shot further back at two over.

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