D+D Real Czech Masters at midway mark

There have been a few surprises so far as the competition tightens up

International and local golfers battled it out Aug. 23 and 24 at the fifth D+D Real Czech Masters. The tournament runs to Aug. 26 at the Albatross Golf Resort in Vysoký Újezd just 10 minutes from Prague’s Zličín district by car.

Lee Westwood, the former world number one, has once again been very popular with the crowds and has put in a solid performance to be at six under par, however, the surprise leader is Gavin Green from Malaysia currently at 12 under.

Green made four birdies in a row, and was not flustered by the variable conditions that saw sunshine as well as rain, wind and lightning storms. Green is one stroke ahead of Danish player Jeff Winther, with three-time major championship winner Padraig Harrington, Italy’s Andrea Pavan, Belgium’s Thomas Pieters and Finland’s Tapio Pulkkanen all just two shots behind.

Pavan looked like a runaway winner early on day one, posting a score of eight under par before dropping back to seven under by the end of the day. Day one also proved a big day for the crowd favorite John Daly, the 52-year-old American can't be missed on the course, as he is followed by the largest crowds during most of the day.

Day two proved more difficult with the cut moving only to four under par. Difficult conditions and tougher pin positions took their toll on several players with plenty of scores above par showing up on the leaderboard. Despite the tough conditions, South African player Christiaan Bezuidenhout and Englishman Tom Lewis managed a reasonable score of six under par.

Czech players have once again disappointed the home crowds by not making it through to the weekend’s action. Filip Mrůzek, who looked in a good spot to make it through to Saturday, stumbled at the final hurdle playing the last three holes in plus 4, missing the cut by three strokes while Ondřej Lieser and Aleš Kořínek finished at even par for the tournament. Fifteen-year-old Václav Tichý, playing as an amateur, scored a reasonable plus 2, but the home fans have been left disappointed by not having a local player to cheer for on Sunday.

There will be plenty of names over the weekend and a full program in the village to keep an eye on. Danny Willet, Padraig Harrington, John Daly, Thomas Pieters and Lee Westwood are all within striking distance of Gavin Green, and the leader will have to maintain his good form to stay in front of the stellar pack.

The tournament village is filled with shops and activities to keep the whole family busy when not watching golf.

Parking is free as is entry for those with a CGF registration card, Škoda Auto card keys, Raiffeisen bank cards or items from other sponsors. A full list can be found at the tournament's website www.czechmasters.cz/en along with details on free bus transfers from the Zličín metro station.

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