Sport

Crowds out in force for Power and Lowry at Mount Juliet

From Mount Juliet

Walking into the course this morning it's cooler and the wind is all but gone.

The flags flying outside the clubhouse hang limply against their poles and the fluttering colours from yesterday are gone.

It's due to be a dry day up until we get a drop of rain this evening, but it looks to be good playing conditions for the hopeful field.

Coming in the door to the media centre, a young steward was asleep at his post. The sign of what's been a long week for the staff. It's far from over yet.

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Seamus Power kicks off round two within four shots of the lead.

The West Waterford man carded an opening-round 68 for 4 under here at Mount Juliet where the crowds had come in full force to see him and Offaly’s Shane Lowry ply their trade.

The two highest-ranked Irishmen were always goig to be the biggest draw of the weekend, and the DP World Tour have planned as such.

On the whole, it was very positive first 18 with shots picked up on the 2nd, 7th, 9th, 10th, 16th & 17th.

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A par save on the 18th was one of the standout shots of the day for Power. He fell 40 yards short of the putting surface, but his follow-up left him a couple of feet for par. It could well have been a spectacular birdy if it had fallen towards the cup by another half inch.

"It's golf. There's always a couple you could have hit better and it was nice to get that one on the last" said Power who'll be hoping to improve on his first outing when he resumes this lunchtime.

The birdie he picked up on the 426-yard par 4 ninth was another key moment for Seamus as he ended his round. That sent him to -4 and by the end of play on Thursday, he was in a share of 23rd.

The par five’s is where life got tricky as he bogeyed both 5 and 8. His approach shot to five sailed over the green and into the back bunker where it rested on the lip. His recovery up to the green was fine, but the wayward putt saw him drop his first shot of the day. That dropped shot was picked up again on seven with a fine below-par score on the 404-yarder, but the good work was undone a shot later on when the par-5 eighth saw him bogey again.

"I got very unlucky on five. I hit a very good tee shot, and I'm sure what happened with the lie but I could barely move it and then just misjudged the wind with the third shot. On eight we were waiting around for a while and I lost focus a bit which happens sometimes so we'll see if I can do a little bit better tomorrow."

New Zealander Ryan Fox is the sole leader here in Kilkenny. He shot 8 under yesterday to take a one-shot lead over the chasing pack where a quartet chase him from 7 under.

Dubliner Niall Kearney has joined Seamus in a share of 23rd while Shane Lowry is further back on one under.

Padraig Harrington and Cork man John Murphy are both 2 under with Harrington the first of the Irish to tee off today.

Tramore amateur Mark Power will return to action at half one where he is level par.

WLR will be providing updates on-air throughout the weekend from Mount Juliet. Follow up online and on social for more.
Live scoring and tee times can be found here.

 

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