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Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Power hits route 66 to get himself into Vegas contention

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Seamus Power fired a bogey-free six-under par round of 66 to move to within four shots of the lead at the halfway stage of the Korn Ferry Tour’s MGM Resorts Championship at Paiute.

The West Waterford professional enjoyed six birdies in warmer afternoon weather in Las Vegas, rising 11 places up the leaderboard to a share of seventh at eight-under alongside the likes of fellow PGA Tour player Aaron Baddeley.

Power, who admitted after Thursday’s round that he’s been in a battle with full fitness of late, will now hope for a big weekend push ahead of his hopeful return to the PGA Tour next week.

“My game is pretty good,” he said. “I had some physical stuff for a while that was kind of hindering me but that’s cleared up. I’m not playing on the PGA Tour this week obviously but I am hoping to play the Zürich Classic of New Orleans next week so I’m raring to go and looking forward to the rest of the season.”

Meanwhile, Canadian Adam Svensson carded a course-record equalling eight-under par round of 64 to open up a two-stroke lead over Kevin Dougherty at Paiute Golf Resort’s Sun Mountain course. With calmer conditions, the field averaged more than three strokes lower on Friday (scoring average of 69.455) compared to the first round (73.026) while the cut fell at 3-under 141 with 73 professionals advancing to the weekend.

“A completely different day than yesterday,” said Svensson. “Yesterday was cold and windy, but today was more of a relaxed day. I just had the putter rolling whereas yesterday was just a fight to make pars and make a couple of birdies here and there.”

With his second Tour victory still fresh in his mind after success in Savannah, Georgia three weeks ago, Friday’s 11 birdie haul was another Korn Ferry Tour best for Svensson who admits he’s riding on a crest of a wave.

“I think I’ve done it one other time in my life, but it was a long time ago,” laughed Svensson. “You feel like the hole is big, you’re hitting your lines and you’re feeling confident. You just have to make good strokes and be feeling it out there.”

A win this week would secure his return to the PGA Tour in Autumn having competing there during the 2018-19 season.

“I learned that you don’t have to play perfect golf,” said Svensson of his win in Savannah. “I hit a lot of bad shots out there today and a lot of good shots. You just kind of have to make those par saves and those birdies when you can.”

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