One shot further back is another large group including another Australian, Brendan Jones, and Japan's Ryo Ishikawa.
Ikeda appeared as if he might rival the exploits of Ryo Ishikawa when he won nine events in a two year period between 2009 and 2011 but although he has continued to play well since his last victory in July of last year he has been unable to get across the line. He has given himself every chance of that happening this week.
Kennedy, who earlier in the season won his first event on the Japan Tour when victorious at the Mizuno Open, has struggled since that win in June but after an early bogey today he continued on from where he left off after his opening round of 68 yesterday and is well positioned as the field heads into the weekend.
Kennedy spent a week back home in Australia recently and while there worked with his own coach Michael Jones and spent time with performance coach Dave Alred who works with Luke Donald and Padraig Harrington. The time appears to be paying off for the 2011 New Zealand Open winner.
Jones missed the cut last at the Tokai Classic in Nagoya and was a little out of sorts with his game earlier this week also. He is now nicely placed to win his third event of the year.
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