Dramatic eagle tops faultless day for Scott

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The Independent Online

Adam Scott outshone his playing partner, Colin Montgomerie, to forge a three-shot lead at the halfway stage of the Qatar Masters here yesterday.

The 21-year-old Australian holed his second shot from 200 yards for an eagle on the 15th hole to cap a superb display in the second round. He carded a flawless 66 for an 11-under-par total of 133. Scott had already had three birdies and was tied for the lead when his drive on the 15th found the first cut of rough on the 466-yard par four.

That left him a daunting 200-yard approach over water to the green – but what could easily have become a bogey five turned into an eagle two as his four-iron approach landed 25 feet short of the flag and rolled straight into the hole.

Scott also birdied the 17th from 15 feet for a three-shot lead over Spain's Jose Manuel Lara, the Dane Anders Hansen and the first-round joint-leader Klas Eriksson, of Sweden. He enjoyed a four-shot cushion over Montgomerie. "I can't control what other players are going to do over the weekend, but if I keep playing the way I have over the first couple of days, then I think it will be good enough," said Scott, who secured his European Tour card in 2000 from eight starts. "I'll just keep my head down but I'm expecting the wind to come up now, so I presume it will get a lot more difficult over the weekend."

Montgomerie was not too down-heartened after making the cut for the first time this season. He had played only four competitive rounds this year, but rounds of 68 and 69 saw him back on the leaderboard. "It was unfortunate that Andrew Oldcorn had to go home for personal reasons, which meant it was slow today, playing with just Adam," the seven-time European No 1 said. "But it's only two days gone, and I'm getting there. It's the first cut I've made this year! Unbelievable."

Montgomerie was alongside his fellow Scot Stephen Gallacher on seven under, the 27-year-old nephew of Bernard looking to claim his maiden title after finishing second behind compatriot Andrew Coltart in the Great North Open last year.

Qatar Masters (Doha) Leading second-round scores (GB or Irl unless stated): 133 A Scott (Aus) 67 66. 136 J M Lara (Sp) 67 69; K Eriksson (Swe) 66 70; A Hansen (Den) 68 68.

137 J-F Remesy (Fr) 68 69; S Gallacher 69 68; C Montgomerie 68 69. 138 R Claydon 70 68; E Romero (Arg) 71 67; I Woosnam 69 69; M A Martin (Sp) 70 68; N Dougherty 69 69; T Johnstone (Zim) 68 70; M Pilkington 69 69; G Orr 69 69; S Hansen (Den) 67 71; I Garbutt 67 71. 139 W Bennett 70 69; T Jaidee (Thai) 69 70; C Wi (S Kor) 69 70; S Luna (Sp) 68 71; P Fowler (Aus) 70 69; D Smyth 69 70; E Simsek (Ger) 69 70; J Bickerton 69 70; J Haeggman (Swe) 66 73. 140 D Howell 68 72; S Little 71 69; M Gronberg (Swe) 70 70; D Clarke 70 70; M Maritz (SA) 69 71; S Walker 68 72. 141 S Kjeldsen (Den) 70 71; H Nystrom (Swe) 69 72; P Price 72 69; R Gonzalez (Arg) 69 72; M Mackenzie 74 67; T Levet (Fr) 73 68; M Roe 66 75; C Pottier (Fr) 72 69; I Hutchings (SA) 76 65; B Davis 68 73; D Carter 70 71; M Cort 68 73. Selected: 142 I Pyman 73 69; S Webster 70 72; R Coles 69 73; S Dodd 70 72; A Coltart 73 69. 143 P Lawrie 71 72.