Lefty, Tiger lurk but Haas upbeat

Bill Haas has set his sights on turning his halfway lead in the Farmers Insurance Open into a weekend to remember.

Bill Haas has set his sights on turning his halfway lead in the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, near San Diego, into a weekend to remember.

And this despite the strong second-round moves by both Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson as they attempt to get back on the winning track.

Haas fired eight birdies in his second-round six-under 66 on the tougher and longer South Course on Friday to take a two-shot lead over Anthony Kim into the weekend.

Day one surprise package, Sunghoon Kang, the Korean Rookie who led after the first round with a 64 shot at the North Course, stumbled badly on the second day at the longer and tougher South Course, tumbling to a 140 36-hole total and seven shots off the pace with a 4-over 76

“A nice 36 (holes) on the weekend could turn this into a great week,” said Haas who is at 133 as he heads into Saturday’s third round.

Mickelson, who has been followed around the scenic cliff-side South and North Courses by his wife Amy for the first time since she was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2009, posted a three-under 69 that put the World No 5 just three shots behind the leader along with defending champion Ben Crane and a rebounding John Daly.

A clearly inspired Mickelson said: “It’s been great having Amy out here this week.

“She just looks terrific. After a year and a half, we’re in such a better place, and it’s been a lot of fun having her out here again.”

Playing the North Course, Daly had an early double bogey but shrugged it away and bounced back to shoot a solid 69.

Woods was five behind after a 69 but found himself only trailing 11 players.

His second round started brightly enough with a run of four straight birdies that took him to three off the lead, but then, inexplicably he stumbled into a poor run which dropped him eight back.

Fortunately his round didn’t end there. The World No 3 finished birdie, par, birdie to bring himself back into contention for a first tournament win since the Australian Masters in 2009.

Kim played alongside Woods and birdied his opening four holes and then a tap-in birdie at the 10th saw him share the lead.
However, he bogeyed the next hole and finished with seven pars, including a three-putt on the 18th.

He said: “I’m really close. I know I’ve said it a million times. I’m not going to say it again. I’ve just got to make a couple of birdies and we’ll see what happens.”