England's Tommy Fleetwood shares lead at Dunhill Links Championship
Dunhill Links Championship
- T Fleetwood (GB), M Hoey (NI)
- L Oosthuizen (RSA)
- D Gaunt (AUS), M Brier (AUT), M Warren (SCO), G McDowell (NI), J Van Zyl (RSA)
- Selected others:
- R McIlroy (NI)
- L Donald (Eng)
- D Clarke (NI)
Tommy Fleetwood fired a flawless nine-under-par 63 to claim a share of the halfway lead of the Dunhill Links Championship at Kingsbarns as he bids for two titles in three weeks.
The 20-year-old collected nine birdies to join Northern Ireland's Michael Hoey at twelve under par, a shot clear of 2010 Open Champion Louis Oosthuizen.
Last year's US Open Champion Graeme McDowell is two shots off the pace.
Lee Westwood bogeyed the last two and the world number two is five behind.
Conditions were perfect on all three courses staging the tournament and Fleetwood thrived on the confidence he gained with victory in the Kazakhstan Open on the Challenge Tour earlier this month.
That win was worth 64,000 euros [£55,000] and has guaranteed the former English Amateur Champion his playing privileges for the full European Tour in 2012.
Fleetwood said: "I've had no pressure on me really, I know where I'm playing next year, which is great.
"Obviously my name is in pretty good company right now. Hopefully I can shoot a decent score tomorrow and play with someone like [defending champion] Martin Kaymer or Lee Westwood. That would be really cool."
Like Fleetwood, Hoey played his second round at Kingsbarns. The 32-year-old from Ballymoney had only one dropped shot in a 66 that put him joint top of the leaderboard.
Those who spent Friday at Carnoustie are the ones considered to have had the best of the draw because they were taking on the toughest of the venues in the easiest conditions.
"We are probably the luckiest people ever to be playing here today," Oosthuizen said after his 67 took him to within a shot of the lead. "You want to get Carnoustie with good weather, if you get it miserable out here you are going to struggle."
The South African now heads to St Andrews, the scene of his runaway Open victory last year. McDowell is in the same section of the draw along with Kaymer, the defending champion who is three shots off the lead.
Scotland's James Byrne was left to rue going out of bounds at the last at Carnoustie. The resulting triple bogey cost the recent Walker Cup star a place near the top of the leaderboard in his first professional appearance in a main tour event.
Earlier he had celebrated a hole in one with a seven iron at the short thirteenth having just collected a birdie at the previous hole. The Scot completed an astonishing five under par run in three holes with an eagle three at the fourteenth.
Byrne's poor finish meant he had to settle for a 71 that leaves him six under par and six shots off the pace.
US Open champion Rory McIlroy had four birdies in his first five holes as he made a 67 that puts him within five shots of the lead.
Luke Donald double-bogeyed the last at Carnoustie for a 71 that leaves the world number one at four under par and in a share of 51st place.