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Ko surges up LPGA leaderboard; Alker leads

Lydia Ko
Lydia Ko made a big move in the second round at the LPGA's Ford Championship. PHOTO: LPGA

Kiwi golfer Lydia Ko has rocketed up the leaderboard at the LPGA Tour's Ford Championship on Friday (Saturday NZ Time).


Ko fired a bogey-free eight-under 64 in the second round at the Seville Country Club in Gilbert, Arizona, moving from a share of 52nd into a tie for sixth at 11-under, three strokes behind the leader, Australian Hannah Green.


Following a three-under 69 in the opening round on Thursday (Friday NZT), the 26-year-old made birdies at the 10th, 12th and 18th holes to make the turn at six-under after starting on the back-nine.


After another birdie at the second, Ko made back-to-back tweeters at the fourth and five, and seventh and eighth holes to jump into the top-10.


The world No 8 was almost perfect during the second round, hitting 14-of-14 fairways and 15-of-18 greens in regulation, requiring just 25 putts. She averaged 263 yards off the tee.


Ko will tee it up in the third round on Saturday (Sunday NZT) alongside German Caroline Masson at 12.50pm local time (8.50am NZT).



Meanwhile, on the PGA Tour Champions, Kiwi Steven Alker is in a three-way tie for the lead after the first round of The Galleri Classic.


Alker is level with South African Retief Goosen and German Alex Cejka after firing a bogey-free six-under 66 on Friday (Saturday NZT) at the Mission Hills Country Club in Palm Springs, California.


The 52-year-old made birdies at the first, fourth, ninth, 11th, 15th and 16th holes as he chases his second victory of the season in the over-50s tour. He went 14-of-14 on fairways and 15-of-18 for greens in regulation.


Alker tees off in the second round at 1.11pm local time on Saturday (9.11am Sunday NZT), with the co-leaders.



On the PGA Tour, Ryan Fox has work to do at the Houston Open, despite an even-par 70 in the second round on Friday (Saturday NZT).


Fox produced four birdies and four bogeys at the Memorial Park Golf Course in Houston, Texas, managing to move up six spots to a share of 55th at one-over, 10 shots behind the leader, American Tony Finau.


The world No 47, who made four birdies, three bogeys and a double-bogey in round one, hit just 4-of-13 fairways and 11-of-18 greens in regulation. Fox just survived on the cut-line, with birdies at the 15th and 16th briefly getting him into red numbers.


He will start his third round, alongside Australian Aaron Baddeley and American Sam Stevens, on Saturday at 12.10pm local time (6.10am Sunday NZT).



No Kiwis made the cut at the DP World Tour's Indian Open, with Daniel Hillier withdrawing with one hole remaining in his second round on Friday.


Hillier was at two-over, three shots below the cut-line with an even-par round going when he left the course. He made three birdies, a bogey and two double-bogeys in his two-over 74 in the first round at the DLF Golf and Country Club in New Delhi, India.


New professional Kazuma Kobori made five birdies and four bogeys in a one-under 71 in the second round but it was not enough to overcome his six-over 78 on Thursday, finishing at five-over.


Sam Jones finished at six-over following a two-over 74 on Friday, which featured two birdies, two bogeys and a double-bogey. He had three birdies, five bogeys and a double-bogey in a four-over 76 on Thursday.

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