Steve Jones leads Vic Open
BY Anthony Powter | Australasian PGA Tour | 2011 Victorian Open | Round Two | 08 Jan 2011
Steve Jones enjoys a two stroke lead at the half-way stage of the Victorian Open being played at Spring Valley Golf Course south of Melbourne.
Jones has fired rounds of 66-69 to be at 7-under-par two shots ahead of Paul Sheehan in second place, while Luke Hickmott and Andrew Tschudin share third at 3-under par.
Overnight co-leaders Cameron Percy and Adam Wilcox shared a similar fate on the second day, both shooting over-par rounds of 79 and 80 respectively to drop down the leader board.
Jones, winner of the 2004 Victorian Amateur, first played the Australasian Tour in 2006 after obtaining his playing rights at the 2005 Q-School. His best local professional finish to date is a tied 2nd behind Aaron Townsend at the 2008 NSW Open and in 2009, he finished 3rd at the Western Australian Open.
In 2008 in the US Jones won his first main professional title on the Gateway Tour and this season locally he’s won numerous pro-ams and finished a respectable tied 16th at the JBWere Masters with a top-finish at the Moonah Links Classic last February.
Jones displayed plenty of discipline during the difficult second round conditions with strong winds lashing the Spring Valley layout to fire one of only six sub-par rounds recorded by the field.
“I didn’t really expect to be in this situation after not really playing much over the last few weeks, but I feel relaxed mentally,” said Jones.
“It was tough, I’ve played in this wind a lot over the years being from Kingston Heath so you just have to manage yourself and play smart where out there par’s a good score.”
Matthew Griffin and Aaron Townsend are within striking distance of Jones just five behind, with amateur Nathan Holman playing stellar golf to be currently in a tie for 6th position a 1-under-par along with David Bransdon and Damon Welsford.
The cut came in at 5-over-par, reflective of the difficult scoring conditions with 2009 champion Ashley Hall one of the tournament casualties not making the weekend along with Matt Giles, Daniel Beckmann and 2009 NSW Open champion, Leigh McKechnie.