Darren Clarke leads The Senior Open

Darren Clarke in action during round 2 of The Senior Open at Gleneagles. Credit: Getty Images.

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Darren Clarke once turned on the style on the back nine on Friday to post a three under par round of 67 and take a two-stroke lead into the weekend of The Senior Open at Gleneagles.

The Dungannon man leads on eight under par, two shots ahead of American Scott Parel. Four back nine birdies saw Clarke set the target before the temperature dropped in the afternoon and made it difficult for anyone to challenge his lead.

The 2011 Open Champion made the turn in one over par after bogeys at the second and seventh sandwiched a birdie at the fourth.

“Around the front nine today, I was so-so. I slipped” said the Tyrone golfer. “My right foot slipped a couple of times. But apart from that, I played really nicely. I’m trying to hit a lot of fairways and give myself decent looks. All the way around the back nine, I kept hitting nice shots. And could have been a few better. But, you know, it’s the way it is.”

Darren Clarke then mirrored his opening day back nine with birdies at the tenth, 14th, 15th and 18th.

Bids for Open – Senior Open double

Clarke, who has three wins on the PGA TOUR Champions since turning 50, is in pole position to claim his first Senior Major Championship. He will need to fend off a star-studded leaderboard if he is to become only the fourth man to win both The Open Championship and The Senior Open.

Fellow former Champion Golfers of the Year Ernie Els and Pádraig Harrington, who will also bid to join Bob Charles, Gary Player and Tom Watson in completing the historic double. Harrington and Els are three strokes back in a share for third place on five under par, alongside four-time Senior Open Champion Bernhard Langer, 2016 winner Paul Broadhurst, American duo Kent Jones and Jerry Kelly, Canadian Stephen Ames and South African David Frost.

Round two scores (Irish players highlighted):

132 D CLARKE 65 67,
134 S PAREL (USA) 66 68,
135 D FROST (RSA) 67 68, E ELS (RSA) 66 69, P BROADHURST (ENG) 65 70, S AMES (CAN) 64 71, P HARRINGTON 66 69, B LANGER (GER) 67 68, J KELLY (USA) 65 70, K JONES (USA) 65 70,
136 G DAY (USA) 64 72, S ALKER (NZL) 68 68, C MONTGOMERIE (SCO) 70 66, M JIMÉNEZ (ESP) 69 67, M MARTIN (ESP) 66 70,
137 S APPLEBY (AUS) 70 67, T JAIDEE (THA) 66 71, M MOLINA (ARG) 68 69, C DENNIS (USA) 69 68, G HOUSTON (WAL) 68 69,
138 Y YANG (KOR) 73 65, K DUKE (USA) 69 69, J SENDEN (AUS) 67 71, M DAWSON (USA) 69 69, S KHAN (ENG) 66 72, C PAVIN (USA) 69 69,
139 M WATSON (ENG) 74 65, D PRIDE (USA) 66 73, J KINGSTON (RSA) 70 69, P LAWRIE (SCO) 69 70, M BROWN (USA) 72 67, J REMESY (FRA) 69 70, M BRIER (AUT) 67 72, R GREEN (AUS) 67 72, R GOOSEN (RSA) 70 69, P MARKSAENG (THA) 68 71, A DA SILVA (BRA) 69 70, C WI (KOR) 73 66,
140 P O’MALLEY (AUS) 71 69, D BARRON (USA) 69 71, S HENDERSON (SCO) 69 71, T GILLIS (USA) 70 70, D MORLAND IV (CAN) 71 69, P PRICE (WAL) 69 71, A BOSSERT (SUI) 70 70, A BUTTERFIELD (ENG) 67 73,
141 H RUDOLPH III (USA) 73 68, S DODD (WAL) 69 72, T BJ?RN (DEN) 67 74, I WOOSNAM (WAL) 71 70, M CAMPBELL (NZL) 71 70, G OWEN (ENG) 69 72, P STREETER (ENG) 70 71, A OLDCORN (SCO) 70 71,
142 J KEMP (AM) (ENG) 73 69, C KRESGE (USA) 72 70, T LEVET (FRA) 69 73, K TRIPLETT (USA) 72 70, P MCGINLEY 71 71, H FRAZAR (USA) 69 73, R COCHRAN (USA) 73 69, T FOSTER (AM) (ENG) 71 71, J HAEGGMAN (SWE) 71 71, R GOMEZ (ARG) 76 66,
143 R DINSDALE (WAL) 72 71, C FRANCO (PAR) 72 71, Y TSUKADA (JPN) 70 73, A CEJKA (GER) 70 73, W AUSTIN (USA) 70 73, W SHORT JR (USA) 72 71, M JONZON (SWE) 71 72,
144 S BERTSCH (USA) 73 71, P WILSON (ENG) 71 73, J BICKERTON (ENG) 69 75, J COCERES (ARG) 74 70, G WOLSTENHOLME (ENG) 71 73, R STRAWN (AM) (USA) 72 72, B BREEN (USA) 69 75, T PETROVIC (USA) 68 76, S MICHEEL (USA) 72 72, D SHACKLADY (ENG) 70 74, T G?GELE (GER) 73 71, S WHIFFIN (ENG) 70 74,
145 V SINGH (FIJ) 72 73, S TINNING (DEN) 75 70, F QUINN (USA) 71 74, J RIPLEY (ENG) 74 71, J CARRILES (ESP) 74 71, K TANIGAWA (USA) 71 74,
146 T SAPERE (USA) 75 71, I FELIU (ESP) 73 73, N SHINOZAKI (JPN) 69 77, A MCLEAN (CAN) 74 72, M REALE (ITA) 70 76, S EDWARDS (WAL) 74 72, E MCINTOSH (SCO) 75 71,
147 P BAKER (ENG) 76 71, R CHAPMAN (ENG) 74 73, J OLAZÁBAL (ESP) 73 74, R LABRITZ (USA) 75 72, A ARCHIBALD (ENG) 74 73, A RAITT (ENG) 72 75, P GOLDING (ENG) 72 75, R GONZALEZ (ARG) 72 75, B KEENAN (AM) (USA) 73 74,
148 P WESSELINGH (ENG) 72 76, D CHARLTON (ENG) 73 75, J SANDELIN (SWE) 75 73, J WADE (AUS) 73 75, G HJERTSTEDT (USA) 73 75, M MCCOY (AM) (USA) 75 73,
149 S GREEN (ENG) 72 77, C ACUTIS (ITA) 75 74, P FOWLER (AUS) 73 76, J BARNES (ENG) 78 71, G JOYNER (AUS) 73 76, D DUVAL (USA) 75 74,
150 C WILLIAMS (RSA) 73 77, J LYONS (USA) 75 75, S LYLE (SCO) 72 78, J SINGH (IND) 75 75,
151 S FITZGERALD 76 75, J CRAMPTON (AM) (ENG) 73 78, E CANONICA (ITA) 72 79, K KAMI (NEP) 76 75,
152 R ALLENBY (AUS) 76 76, A WELSFORD (AUS) 77 75,
153 M STEVENSON (ENG) 77 76, M ASHWORTH (ENG) 78 75, R MAXFIELD (AM) (ENG) 76 77, L MATTIACE (USA) 74 79,
154 R BEEM (USA) 77 77, N BEAUFILS (FRA) 75 79, B CAMERON (ENG) 80 74, R SABARROS (FRA) 77 77,
155 N CONNOLLY (ENG) 78 77,
156 N FASTH (SWE) 78 78,
158 J WARNE (USA) 76 82, R TUDDENHAM (ENG) 75 83,
159 D CARTER (ENG) 78 81, R GERWIN II (AM) (USA) 78 81,
160 R BARNES (AM) (ENG) 80 80,
163 B ROLLINSON (USA) 81 82,
**
OUT B LANE (ENG) 71 WD

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