Golf: Alker remains in contention in Idaho

Hamilton golfer Steven Alker remains in contention for his second Web.com Tour title of the season. Photo/Martin Hunter
Hamilton golfer Steven Alker remains in contention for his second Web.com Tour title of the season. Photo/Martin Hunter

Hamilton golfer Steven Alker remains in contention for his second Web.com Tour title of the season, sitting two shots back at the halfway stage of the Boise Open in Idaho.

The 41-year-old, who opened with a nine-under par 62 to share the lead at the Hillcrest Country Club, carded a three-under par 68 in the second round to slip back to a share of fifth place.

The Utah Open champion from three weeks ago will begin the third round two shots back Scotland's Russell Knox, who became the second player in a month to shoot a 59 on the tour.

Alker made six birdies and three bogeys in his second round effort. In his current place on the leaderboard he is projected to climb from 21st on the Web.com Tour money-list to 15th.

Danny Lee, who is ninth on the order of merit, climbed 50 places in round two when he carded a seven-under par 67 to get into a share of 23rd place.

The Web.com Tour has reported that the former US Amateur champion has already done enough to qualify for next year's PGA Tour, alongside Tim Wilkinson in eighth place on the money-list.

Wilkinson, hoping to return to the PGA Tour for the first time since 2009, failed to back up his eight-under par in round one when he shot an even-par 71 to drop to a share of 29th place.

If all three Kiwis can progress to the PGA Tour in 2014 it will be a return to the heyday of New Zealand golf. In 2002, New Zealand had its largest ever presence on the PGA Tour, with five players (Craig Perks, Frank Nobilo, Phil Tataurangi, Grant Waite and Michael Long) on the game's most lucrative tour.

Meanwhile, in Europe, Michael Campbell has made the cut on his debut at the Russian Open.

Campbell, who carded a two-under par 70 at the Tseleevo Golf and Polo Club to be in a share of 14th place after round one, signed for a one-over par 73 in round two to be in a share of 29th place.

The former US Open champion, who began the year well with two top-20 finishes in the United Arab Emirates, is on a one-under par total, eight shots back from Swedish leader Rikard Karlberg.

- APNZ

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