Hoey charges into early lead

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Ireland’s Michael Hoey has raced into the early lead in Friday’s second round the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.

Ireland’s Michael Hoey has raced into the early lead in Friday’s second round the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.

Hoey, who teed off on the back nine at Kingsbarns, had picked up three birdies after seven holes to take his tournament total to 9-under, but his flying start was only enough to get him one shot clear of the always dangerous Martin Kaymer.

The German owner of the 2010 PGA title and briefly, after that, the World No 1, came storming out of his recent spell of mediocrity on the front nine of Carnoustie, generally regarded as the toughest of the three courses in play this week, to make four birdies in just eight holes and grab a share of second place at eight under par with one of the four overnight leaders Louis Oosthuizen.

The 2010 Open Champion who, like Kaymer, has been battling to find the kind of form that earned him his 5-shot Open victory at St Andrews some 13 months ago, is also playing Carnoustie today (Friday) and made three birdies in only five holes as he let the field know he is not going to go away very easily this week.

The three men Kaymer and Oosthuizen are tied with are Frenchmen Gregory Havret and Gregory Bourday and Austria’s No 1 player Markus Broer.

Rafael Cabrera Bello, another of the overnight leaders, was a further shot back at 7-under after birdying his very first hole as he joined Tommy Fleetwood, Romain Wattle, Fredrik Andersson Hed and James Byrne in joint 7th place.

Best placed of the large numbers of remaining big guns at this early stage were World No 2 Lee Westwood, who was at 6-under after nine holes, Masters champion Charl Schwartzel, who was at 5-under after seven holes, and Northern Ireland’s two US Open Champions Graeme McDowell (2010) and Rory McIlroy (2011), who were also at 5-under – in their cases after only four holes.

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