Saturday, August 06, 2016

Jeff Karlsson leads Swedish Challenge  at halfway, Duncan Stewart top Scot

Jeff Karlsson made a late charge up the leaderboard to claim top spot at the halfway stage of the Swedish Challenge hosted by Robert Karlsson on the European Challenge Tour.
The Swede, playing in his first event on the Road to Oman this season, started his round with a bogey, but bounced back with three birdies to reach the turn in 33 at Katrineholms GK.
The 27 year old, who finished tied 68th at the Nordea Masters in his only other event in Europe this season, then made three further gains and a bogey over the front nine, his back nine, to card a four under par round of 68.
And Karlsson is confident that he can extend the one shot lead he holds over compatriot Johan Edfors, Finland’s Kalle Samooja and England’s Ben Stow during the weekend.
“I think I just played pretty solid and didn’t have any big misses anywhere,” he said. “I played pretty conservatively off the tee and gave myself a lot of chances on the greens – so I feel like I managed it pretty well.
“After playing in America it is awesome to be back at home. Swedish summers are quite amazing and I have actually been back for two weeks now.
“I got given a last minute invite to this tournament – which I was hoping for – so that was nice to get to play a little bit of competitive golf while I’m home too.
“I had played the course before but I didn’t really remember it. But then as soon as the competition started I began to remember each hole, and I feel that I have been able to take advantage of that so far.
“Over the weekend I will try not to do anything differently. I am pretty set on which clubs are best to hit off every tee and it looks like the wind is in the same direction every day so I will try and execute the same plan.
“I will go back and play on the PGA TOUR in the autumn in Latin America where I have full status – so I will take advantage of that – but I would like to come back and play in the European Tour Qualifying School as well.”

Close behind Karlsson is fellow countryman and three-time European Tour champion Edfors who shot a four under par round of 68 to draw level with Samooja who was the early clubhouse leader in Katrineholm.
France’s Damien Perrier picked up eight birdies on his way to carding the best round of the day with a 65, while his compatriot Romain Langasque holed out from 195 yards with a six iron on the par five 17th to make the second albatross on the Challenge Tour this season.

135 Jeff Karlsson (Sweden 67 68
136 Ben Stow (England0 69 67, Johan Edforst (Sweden) 678 68, Kalle Samooja (Finland) 70 66

138 Duncan Stewart 70 68 (T7)
141 Scott Henry 72 69 (T24)

SCOTS WHO MISSED THE CUT (144 and better qualified)
147 Peter Whiteford 76 70
147 Bradley 69 78
148 Craig Sutherland 77 71
151 Jack Doherty 76 75
153 Paul Shields 78 75





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