Harrington leads at halfway

Padraig Harrington kept the field at bay and maintained his lead after the second round of the Bridgestone Invitational.

A 69 from Padraig Harrington kept the field at bay as the Irishman maintained his lead after the second round of the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational.
Three-time major winner Harrington had produced his best round of the year with a 64 at Firestone on Thursday to lead by two from Thailand’s Prayad Marksaeng, Tim Clark of South Africa and American Scott Verplank.
The Irishman picked up where he left off as he began his second round well, moving to seven under par after five holes.
He bogeyed the par-four eighth, the only blemish on his round, but rebounded at the 13th courtesy of a birdie from 30 feet.
“Shooting that score yesterday gave me a great chance for the tournament,” Harrington said.
“Anything under 70 from here on in is going forward so I’m quite pleased to have shot 69.”
The Dubliner admitted his second round had been less aggressive than his first but added: “I normally play the first rounds cautiously.
“I was a bit cautious today. I was more worried about my misses rather than having that sort of confident attitude and going after a few more pins.
“You know that if you shortside yourself you’re going to have difficulty getting up and down. But you’ve got to make some birdies.
“My short game has been good enough, so I probably should be a little bit more aggressive over the weekend.”
Harrington will take a one-shot lead into the third round on Saturday, with Clark on six under following a 68.
Verplank matched Harrington with a 69 that left him at five under while Marksaeng moved into a share of the lead at seven under before falling off the pace on the way to a which left him at four under.
Also four under are Americans Steve Stricker, who carded a 69, and Jerry Kelly, who hit a 65.
In a field reduced to 79 players following the withdrawal through injury of Paul Casey during the first round, Spain’s Alvaro Quiros made a big move into contention with a 65 to move from two over to three under.
American Woody Austin was also on three under following a 68, as was former Masters champion Zach Johnson.
World number one Tiger Woods, a six-time winner at Firestone, returned a 70 to stay at two under par, while playing partner Sergio Garcia carded a 72 to fall back to level par.
Four birdies in his first 12 holes moved England’s Oliver Wilson to five under par for the week but three bogeys on his back nine left the Ryder Cup player with a 69, two under for the tournament.
Open champion Stewart Cink and US Open winner Lucas Glover also finished two under.
World number two Phil Mickelson added a 69 to his opening 70 while English duo Nick Dougherty and Lee Westwood both shot 71 to move to level par.
Northern Ireland’s Darren Clarke, the 2003 champion, will start round three at one over following a 70.
England’s Ian Poulter slumped to a four-over 74 that left him at one over while Clarke’s compatriots Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell were also over par, as were England’s Ross Fisher, Luke Donald and Justin Rose and Ireland’s Shane Lowry.
Rose was the best of that bunch on Friday, his 68 moving him to three over alongside Vijay Singh, who saw his title defence go cold with a 73.
Fisher’s 71 took him to one over, Donald was at two over following a 72 and McDowell finished at four over after a 71. McIlroy shot 70 to stay at five over and Lowry hit a second successive 78.
All the second round scores & totals in the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational, Firestone Country Club, South Course, Akron, Ohio, United States of America.
(USA unless stated, par 70):

133 Padraig Harrington (Irl) 64 69
134 Tim Clark (Rsa) 66 68
135 Scott Verplank 66 69
136 Jerry Kelly 71 65, Steve Stricker 67 69, Prayad Marksaeng (Tha) 66 70
137 Hunter Mahan 68 69, Robert Allenby (Aus) 68 69, Zach Johnson 67 70, Mike Weir (Can) 71 66, Woody Austin 69 68, Alvaro Quiros (Spa) 72 65
138 Tiger Woods 68 70, Retief Goosen (Rsa) 71 67, Lucas Glover 69 69, Davis Love III 72 66, Oliver Wilson (Eng) 69 69, David Toms 69 69, Angel Cabrera (Arg) 70 68, Stewart Cink 69 69, Boo Weekley 69 69
139 Phil Mickelson 70 69, Chad Campbell 71 68, Nick O’Hern (Aus) 72 67
140 Sergio Garcia (Spa) 68 72, Soren Hansen (Den) 69 71, Nick Dougherty (Eng) 69 71, Geoff Ogilvy (Aus) 69 71, Kenny Perry 69 71, Anthony Kim 72 68, Trevor Immelman (Rsa) 70 70, Miguel Angel Jimenez (Spa) 68 72, Camilo Villegas (Col) 70 70, Carl Pettersson (Swe) 70 70, Lee Westwood (Eng) 69 71
141 Jeev Milkha Singh (Ind) 70 71, Ross Fisher (Eng) 70 71, Darren Clarke (NIrl) 71 70, Danny Lee (Nzl) 68 73, Dustin Johnson 70 71, Justin Leonard 70 71, Sean O’Hair 69 72, Ian Poulter (Eng) 67 74, Gonzalo Fdez-Castano (Spa) 70 71, Stuart Appleby (Aus) 73 68, Henrik Stenson (Swe) 69 72
142 Nick Watney 74 68, Soren Kjeldsen (Den) 72 70, Rory Sabbatini (Rsa) 71 71, Pat Perez 70 72, J.B. Holmes 70 72, Cameron Beckman 71 71, Luke Donald (Eng) 70 72
143 Vijay Singh (Fij) 70 73, Justin Rose (Eng) 75 68, Ernie Els (Rsa) 71 72, Charles Howell III 71 72
144 Mathew Goggin (Aus) 73 71, Jim Furyk 73 71, Graeme McDowell (NIrl) 73 71, Anders Hansen (Den) 73 71, Y.E. Yang (Kor) 72 72
145 Christian Cevaer (Fra) 75 70, Nathan Green (Aus) 74 71, Rory McIlroy (NIrl) 75 70, Adam Scott (Aus) 78 67, Thongchai Jaidee (Tha) 71 74, Richard Sterne (Rsa) 72 73
146 K J Choi (Kor) 74 72, Martin Kaymer (Ger) 72 74, Ben Curtis 77 69, Shingo Katayama (Jpn) 74 72
147 Anthony Kang 71 76
149 Brian Gay 75 74, Chih-bing Lam (Sin) 74 75
150 Gregory Havret (Fra) 73 77
151 Marc Turnesa 76 75
156 Shane Lowry (Irl) 78 78
157 Yuji Igarashi (Jpn) 74 83