#JoburgOpen Rd 2 What They Said

Tapio Pulkkanen (Fin) – Second Round 64 (-8), Total 129 (-14)

I started really well. Six birdies in a row – that was an awesome start. I had some tough times midway but I managed to get good pars and a couple of birdies on the back nine. Solid round.

I birdied five of those in the practice round so it was a similar feeling. It was a fantastic feeling. I tried to have a new start on the back nine. I made myself feel like I was level par and tried to make more birdies. That was the goal.

We (with Erik van Rooyen) had some good battles last year on the Challenge Tour and I’m looking forward to playing against him on the weekend. Yesterday I had a birdie putt on the last hole and I saw that Erik was on the board on seven-under, so I told myself I had to make that birdie putt and I did.

My driver has been really good. That’s been key for me. The course is perfect, no problem at all. A little bit soft greens but perfect.

PHO11376 copyShubhankar Sharma (Ind) – Second Round 61 (-10), Total 130 (-13)

It was great. I couldn’t have done better. I made pretty much made everything I looked at. I hit the ball pretty decent and made a few key up and downs. I couldn’t have asked for a better round.

When I shot three-under yesterday, I went home and slept and when I woke up, so many guys were under-par! I wasn’t relaxed with a three-under-par and I really wanted to make birdies in my round. As soon as I was four-under after six, I was relaxed because I’m playing well.

On 17, I hit a good shot. I tried to hit a hard drive to get on the green in two but I pulled it a little bit. I told my caddy we can still make a birdie with a wedge and hit it to about four feet. That was a good birdie.

Bushwillow is obviously shorter than Firethorn but it is narrow. You have to be really straight off the tee if you want to attack the greens. I’m glad I came here. I’m really happy to be in the situation which I’m in.

It is great to have a tri-sanctioned event. It is great for the Asian players like me to come out here. It is my first time in South Africa and the courses are great. We are all looking forward to more of such events in the future.

It is every golfer’s dream to play in The Open but at the same time, I don’t really want to think too much about it. It is only halfway through. I want to keep my head down and keep playing. To win is a big thing and whatever comes with it is a bonus.

Erik van Rooyen (Rsa) – Second Round 67 (-5), Total 131 (-12)

It was a great start to get four birdies in a row. The weather was perfect this morning. It doesn’t matter when you make them, as long as you make them. It was fun to get off to a hot start. And you don’t want to rein yourself in when you get that kind of run going. You try and keep the pedal down. I still played fine. I had a couple of close shaves on the greens here and there. It’s not as if I all of a sudden played poorly. I still played some good golf and I made a couple of nice putts on the back nine as well.

Daniel Brooks (Eng) – Second round 67 (-5), Total 133 (-10)

So far so good. I’ve had a couple of good scoring days and I haven’t played my best golf yet. I’ve been holing a few nice putts here and there.

The Firethorn is probably the tougher course. I got off to a nice start but lost my way halfway through the round. I didn’t hit many good shots at all but made a few good up-and-downs and played solid coming in again.

I would have putted (from the edge of 18th green) but there was a lump in front and I would have double hit it. I had a nice chip and finished off with a tap-in.

PHO11052 copyIf you have a good round it is always nice to follow it up. The greens have soften up after the rain and you can fire at it a bit more. There was a little bit of breeze. The greens are rolling true out there.

James Morrison (Eng) – Second Round 70 (-2), Total 134 (-9)

I’m very pleased. I played a lot better than my score suggests. I played well and putted well but I didn’t get the speed of the greens this morning. I played steady and kept it in play. It was good fun playing in my group.

It’s getting hotter so the ball is going further. The wind is picking up so it will be an interesting test this afternoon. I’m coming from Europe to this altitude, the minute it gets hot, the ball flies further. It is hard to adjust but I’ve been coming here for years so I’m quite used to it. The minute it gets hot, the ball goes miles so it is just a matter of being aware of the heat and adapting to it.

I’ve been here so many times before. You got to do the same routine. At the end of the day it is just another round of golf. My caddy and I have a thing. We said four-under a day so we are one ahead of that. I think we need at least a -10 weekend to have a chance.

I haven’t actually played that hole yet (18) and I didn’t realise how long it was. I hit three-wood off the tee and five iron in. I hit it to about 15 feet and rolled it in so that was a good way to finish.

Gavin Green (Mas) – Second Round 67 (-4), Total 137 (-6)

It is a big relief especially coming down the stretch. It was a strong finish. I stayed patient. I had a few bad holes but made par. I only hit two fairways. My tee shots were a little bit haywire. I gave myself looks, some went in and some didn’t so it was a good average round.

I like the other course better (Firestone). The field is strong so I will try and go as low as I can. Out of the four days, today will be the toughest because you are thinking of all kind of things.

Oh my goodness, yes making the cut will definitely ease the pressure now. I will definitely be more aggressive now. I will fire the par fives and stick to the game plan. My hitting was a lot better than today although my scores didn’t show. It is important to hit a lot of greens on the weekend because it is very tough around the greens. Hopefully I give myself some birdie looks and see how it goes.