Hahn grabs Phoenix lead ahead of Fowler, Lee

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James Hahn lines up a putt on the ninth hole during the second round of the Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale on Saturday in Scottsdale, Arizona. AFP PHOTO

James Hahn lines up a putt on the ninth hole during the second round of the Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale on Saturday in Scottsdale, Arizona. AFP PHOTO

LOS ANGELES: James Hahn fired a bogey-free six-under par 66 on Friday (Saturday in Manila) to grab the lead in the second round of the US PGA Tour Phoenix Open ahead of Rickie Fowler and Danny Lee.

Korean-American Hahn had a 10-under total of 132 after 36 holes at TPC Scottsdale.

World number four Fowler fired a 68 while New Zealand’s lee carded a 66 for 133.

Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama and Ireland’s Shane Lowry — who shared the first-round lead with Fowler — both posted 70s for 135, where they were joined by Harris English, who signed for a 67.


The event known for its raucous atmosphere drew a record 160,415 people to the course, breaking the previous Friday record of 123,674 set in 2014.

They were treated to not one but two holes-in-one.

Jack Maguire, in his first professional start on the US PGA Tour, aced the 12th hole with a seven-iron from 206 yards.

A short time later, Chad Campbell aced the seventh hole with a six-iron from 194 yards.

Hahn, who won his first tour title at Riviera in Los Angeles last year, has long enjoyed the atmosphere in Phoenix, where in 2013 he celebrated a birdie at the 16th with a “Gangnam Style” dance.

His six birdies didn’t include the famously festive 16th on Friday — so after missing the green at the par-three he punished himself with 10 pushups instead.

“It’s good for golf, good for the game, good for the fans that come out here,” Hahn said. “They support the golf tournament, so might as well give them a show.”

Hahn put on quite a show with his game as well, chipping in for birdie at his first hole — the par-four 10th. He birdied both of the par-fives on the back nine and birdied three more coming in.

He drained a 10-footer at the sixth to take the outright lead.

“I’m having fun out there,” he said. “Making a lot of putts, hitting a lot of fairways, giving myself many opportunities to make birdie.”

With the tournament still a bit behind after a first-round fog delay on Thursday morning, play was halted by darkness with a handful of players yet to finish.

Fowler, who moved up in the world rankings with his win in Abu Dhabi a fortnight ago then missed the cut at Torrey Pines last week, had four birdies and one bogey, recovering from a bogey at the 17th with a birdie at the last.

Lee got off to a hot start with birdies at five of his first eight holes — including a 20-footer at 16.

“Wind was definitely in play today,” said Lee, who won his first US Tour title last year at the Greenbrier Classic. “It was a little bit different than yesterday. The greens being so firm, you’re kind of forced to hit driver.”

Five-time major winner Phil Mickelson carded a 71 for two-under 140.

AFP

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