Mercedes Championship round two: Canada leads, but don't count out Britain's Stephen Ames
I wish all you guys would stop talking about Canada taking over the leaderboard. Mike Weir might be topping the chart at the half-way stage, but he has a doughty Brit sitting right on his tail in the shape of Stephen Ames.
Don’t look at me in that tone of voice. It’s all quite clear, he said so himself at his media conference. “It is a British Commonwealth, Trinidad was a British Commonwealth. I am British, also.” So that’s settled then. If we could claim Greg Rudsetski as one of our own, which we did (with rather mixed results it has to be said), we’ll happily take Stephen too, given the parlous state of British sport these days. Only trick now is to work out which of the home countries to classify him as. Wales I think. I just love that red dragon flag.
Of course I only indulge in this frivolity as a way of disguising the fact that I haven’t a clue where we go from here. Plenty took advantage of the much improved conditions to fire good rounds, especially the irrepressible Mark Calcavecchia with a seven under - he didn’t miss a single green Friday. But no one was able to separate from the pack, so it’s still looking very crowded up top. You have to like the way Ames and Weir have picked up where they left off at the end of last season, though. Strong putting was the clincher for them, as it would have been for Brandt Snedeker had he not rushed things at the finish Friday. Someone should tell him to slow down a bit. With more benign weather forecast, conquering the grainy greens could be the weekend clincher.
And don’t think the likes of Vijay Singh are completely out of it either. He was a wire-to-wire winner last year, but is no stranger to storming weekend comebacks, and this competition has a habit of throwing up such surprises. Sergio Garcia came from 7 behind at the half way stage to win in 2002 for instance, as did Stuart Appleby three years later.
Naturally, though, I’m rooting for the Brit. C’mon Stevey boy!
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