Shilton leads in Noumea
BY Bruce Young | 28 Sep 2012
New Zealand’s Brad Shilton leads the PGA Tour of Australasia’s South Pacific Open Championship through 54 holes of the event at the Tina Golf Club in Noumea.
Shilton’s second round of 65 was the best score of day two and gives him a lead of three shots over first round leader Henry Epstein heading into tomorrow’s final round.
“I started off well I had 5-under on the front, I had few 50/50’s that went my way which definitely helped," said Shilton. "I made a couple of birdies from those and got a bit of momentum.
“I hit a couple of pretty average shots on the back nine and just didn’t really get anything going but I got super lucky on 17, I hit a terrible tee shot which probably bounced out of bounds and managed to come back in again and managed to make four so that was pretty big.”
“I’m pretty happy with how it went overall, I three putted 14 for par, which was really the only one that felt like a bogey, but no bogeys so it’s all good.”
Shilton has played on a resticted schedule in 2012 as he considered his playing options.
“I really haven’t been playing a whole lot which is good, the brain is working a lot better, I felt comfortable out there today,”
“Before this year I hadn’t had a decent break for probably six or seven years and that has definitely shown, just mentally if I wasn’t playing well the last few years I would just struggle to get it done.”
“Today I hit a few bad shots and it just didn’t really faze me, I just kept going and managed to get a good score on the board.”
Winning the South Pacific Golf Open Championship would be a huge break for the 33-year-old who has spent seven years competing on the PGA Tour of Australasia.
“It would be pretty big, I’ve been playing Aussie Tour for seven years now and had half a dozen top 10’s in these types of events so a win would be huge,”
“The tournament organiser said to me this morning that I am the only one to have played this event all five years, so it would be nice to get a win up here,” added Shilton who has supported the event since it was a pro-am.
First round leader Henry Epstein bounced back today shooting 5-under the card to move into second place, three shots back from Shilton with Shilton’s fellow New Zealander Ryan Fox alone in third position at 9 under.
Defending champion Matt Griffin, Tasmanian Clint Rice and Queenslander Kurt Carlson are one shot further back.
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