Sandelin holds sway in Taiwan

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The Independent Online

Jarmo Sandelin held the lead at the halfway stage of the Asian Open in Taiwan yesterday. The Swede, without a win for more than two years, carded a 66 for a six-under-par total of 138 at Ta Shee and is in pole position to claim his first win since victory in the 1999 German Open in Berlin sealed his Ryder Cup place at Brookline.

The 34-year-old held a one-shot lead over the field as scoring conditions improved vastly after the strong winds that sent scores soaring on Thursday eased.

Spain's Miguel Angel Jimenez carded a 69 to lie one shot behind on five-under with another Swede, Carl Pettersson, another stroke adrift following a 68 alongside two of the pre-tournament favourites, former Masters champions Vijay Singh and Jose Maria Olazabal.

Nick Faldo was not out of the picture after improving on his opening round of 73 with a 70 to be one-under, five shots behind Sandelin.

Scott Laycock leads on the second day of the Australian Open with Ernie Els one of three players a shot behind.

Laycock's 67, which moved him to seven-under on 135 at The Grand on the Gold Coast, included an eagle after he chipped in at the 10th. Els is tied with Geoff Ogilvy and Rod Pampling.