Davies disappointed as Donald takes Madrid Masters lead

Luke Donald leads at halfway in the Madrid Masters after Welshman Rhys Davies just failed to crown his 25th birthday by taking top spot.

Former Walker Cup player Davies, who has already won in his first full season on the European Tour, was tied for the lead with two holes of his second round to play yesterday.

But a bogey on the short 17th robbed him of top spot and he then missed a nine-foot birdie chance at the last on a day which saw Sergio Garcia miss his first halfway cut on European soil for nearly six years.

"I was a little disappointed the way I finished," said Davies. "I thought I could have got the lead on my own, but all in all I'm not going to complain. I'm right in with a shout."

A week after losing the BMW PGA Championship by a shot – and that after a double bogey on the penultimate hole – Donald leads on 12 under par after adding a 67 to his opening 65. Alone of the three first-round leaders to have a morning start, Donald went six clear of the field when he turned in 31 and then added further birdies on the second and sixth.

But he three-putted the seventh and bogeyed the next hole after plugging in a bunker.

"It's hard to play perfect golf for four days, but the two bogeys were not really bad shots and I feel like I have a lot better control with my irons this week," said the 32-year-old, who despite being 13th in the world has not had a win in Europe for six years or anywhere in the last four.

"I keep knocking at the door and hopefully it will open soon. I feel like I should have won a few in the last few years, but I'm in a great position here."

Davies was on the practice putting green when he saw Donald's score, but promptly went out in 33 and, after stumbling with a bogey six at the 10th, had three more birdies in four holes.

Two shots further back in third place is Davies' compatriot Jamie Donaldson. He was the other man to open with a 65, but could add "only" a 70.

Garcia, level par overnight, knew he needed to find form in a hurry after finding water with his second shot and resuming with a double bogey seven.

He did manage six birdies, but five bogeys followed to leave him with a 73 and one-over aggregate.

"Nobody likes to miss a cut in front of your home crowd," said Garcia. "I'm just not playing well enough."

Ulsterman Graeme McDowell, who discovered this week that he had kept his place in the world's top 50, is in fourth on eight under after a second successive 68.

Arts and Entertainment
Lou Reed distorted the truth about his upbringing, and since his death in 2013, biographers and memoirists have added to the myths
musicThe truth about Lou Reed's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths
News
people
News
Ed Miliband received a warm welcome in Chester
election 2015
Life and Style
Apple CEO Tim Cook announces the Apple Watch during an Apple special even
fashionIs the Apple Watch for you? Well, it depends if you want for the fitness tech, or the style
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own