Simpson, eh? Webb goes low at Players

Simpson, eh? Webb goes low at Players

Simpson, eh? Webb goes low at Players

With a missed cut staring him in the face as he teed off in the second round of The Players championship at TPC Sawgrass, the Offalyman - who'd suffered the ignominy of two water balls in his opening round - responded with a second round 68 for 143, one-under, that left him alongside Tiger Woods at the midpoint.

Simpson was on the verge of smashing the course record after reeling off six straight birdies but came to grief at the island-green par-three 17th.

The incredible effort of a second hole eagle, nine birdies and the 17th hole double-bogey handed the World No.41 a 15-under par total and still a commanding five-shot leading cushion over his rivals.

But it was still a magnficient round, and sees him five shots clear of Charl Schwartzel, Patrick Cantley (backed by our golf betting guru Nick Fleming) and Danny Lee.

Asked if he prefers being a front-running leader or chasing, he said: "Well, if I'm the front-runner, five shots is better than one". Two birdies to finish would mean a 59; parring in would ensure the course record.

But the cut line was nowhere near Simpson's radar as he put together one of the finest rounds of his career, his charge up the leaderboard beginning with a 35-foot putt for eagle at the second, and he then picked up three shots in five holes to cap a faultless, outward 31. "So it reminded me of being back home, shooting low numbers". I don't think it was a mistake.

Nevertheless, the 14-time major champion will play the weekend for the seventh time in eight events he has played this year in his return from back surgery.

Dustin Johnson got off to a strong start but still has work to do to hang on to his world number one ranking as six players shared the lead Thursday at The Players Championship.

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While Lowry's midway score of one under par was enough to keep him involved going to the weekend, Rory McIlroy's tournament is over after a second round 74 saw him slide to one over par.

"When you're out there competing in a big tournament, you're as focused as can be, but then at a certain point, maybe on 13 today, you start just - like a kid, just kind of laughing", he said. Simpson posted 1.429 putts per GIR and 4.908 SG: Putting with just 23 total putts. May. Spieth three-putted from 35 feet, though he shot 68 and ended three straight years missing the cut.

Simpson's struggles at the 17th boiled down to being unsure of about hitting a pitching wedge or sand wedge from 140 yards.

Woods made an 18-footer for eagle at the par-five ninth hole, but needed to salvage bogey at the par-four 18th to shoot a 72.

Fourteen-time major victor Tiger Woods (71) finished on the cut line at one under, as did world number two Justin Thomas (70) and world number four Jordan Spieth (68).

It's the second time in as many years that the Stadium Course has been brought to its knees through two rounds, with the field combining for a subpar scoring average (71.647) that is more than a shot lower than last year's average.

"It wasn't a mistake", Simpson said. He was in the feature pairing with Phil Mickelson and Rickie Fowler, and Woods was the only one to make the cut.

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