KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 12 ― Kansas native Gary Woodland had finished second at the CIMB Classic twice and this time he was joint leader with Australian Marc Leishman heading into moving day of the CIMB Classic at TPC Kuala Lumpur.
Woodland, 34, lost in a playoff in 2013 to two-time champion Ryan Moore and then finished second (three shots behind Moore) in 2014. Today he blitzed the course with an 11-under 61 to tie the course record Marc in a share of the second-round lead at 14-under.
Woodland's bogey-free nines of 30-31 matched the 61 that Justin Thomas shot while winning the event in 2015, his first of two titles in a row in Kuala Lumpur.
“It's nice to play the ball down this week. Just like I did yesterday, I made more putts,” Woodland told reporters after his round.
“I hit 17 greens, which obviously is a big deal, but I made some putts, too, which is nice.
“This golf course suits up pretty good for me, I've had success here in the past. It's nice to be back and playing well.”
Meanwhile, world No. 24 Leishman attributed his 36-hole tied lead to the unpredictable weather and the absence of wind helped which helped his game.
“There's no wind, the fairways are still quite firm so you're hitting som really long drives out there and having some short irons into holes,” said Leishman.
“If you're in the rough it's tough to hit it close. but if you're hitting good shots, you can have a really low score.
“The greens are absolutely perfect, so it’s probably a combination of all those,” said three-time Tour winner Leishman.
England’s Paul Casey and current Asian Tour Habitat for Humanitarian standings leader Shubhankar Sharma of India will go into the weekend on joint third at 13-under-par 131 while round one leader Bronson Burgoon of United States and his compatriots Scott Piercy and Austin cook share fifth place at 12-under-par 132.
Defending champion Pat Perez scored an eagle on the fifth but is still struggling to make an impact with scores of 70-69 and is now joint 36th with five others.
The US$7million (RM29 million) no cut tournament continues tomorrow till Sunday.