MARC Leishman carded the equal best score of the day to move into the top five at the Arnold Palmer Invitational heading to the weekend.
Charley Hoffman added a second round of 66 to his opening 68 and leads by one as the event heads into the weekend at the Bay Hill Lodge and Spa in Orlando.
Hoffman leads over Argentinean, Emiliano Grillo, with Grillo’s fellow first round leader, Matthew Fitzpatrick of England, another shot back and alone in third position.
Hoffman has seldom played this event and when he has he has hardly performed with distinction having missed three of this last four cuts.
But despite some inconsistent form of late he finds himself in the lead through 36 holes.
Hoffman described his form turnaround this week following his press conference yesterday.
HIGHLIGHTS FROM ROUND TWO OF THE ARNOLD PALMER INVITATIONAL AT BAY HILL:
“Just more mental than anything, just sort of, I mean, not having any reserve, just go after it,” he said.
“If you're going to play bad, you might as well go down swinging sort of thing. I think I might have been a little bit conservative early in the year and just sort of been going at more pins and being a little more aggressive."
The four time PGA Tour winner recorded the equal best round on day two (66) alongside Australian Leishman.
Leishman heads the Australians, the Victorian making a significant move on day two to finish just three shots from Hoffman’s lead and in a share of fourth position.
Leishman has been playing well in recent starts without contending but he has opened up the opportunity to do just that this week.
The 33-year-old has one good finish in this event previously when third six years ago so does have a comfort zone with Bay Hill.
Greg Chalmers and defending champion, Jason Day, are the next best of the Australians in 13th position, but seven shots from the lead.
Day recoded an eagle and a birdie against two bogeys on his way to a 1-under 71 while Chalmers trod water with four dropped shots against four birdies to post even par.
Cameron Smith and Ryan Ruffels are tied for 26th while Aaron Baddeley was the only other Australian to make the cut in 46th place.
Ruffels, playing on invite, was unable to follow up his excellent opening round of 69 and was round in 74 today but has done well to be handily enough placed heading into the weekend.
Australia’s other tournament invite, Curtis Luck, was not so fortunate however. Luck, who ascended to the top of the world amateur rankings this week, added a second round of 82 to finish last in the field.
He was then subsequently disqualified, inadvertently signing for a par on his last hole when he actually took bogey although it would have made no difference.
MARC LEISHMAN TALKS GOLF AND FAMILY:
Want video tips delivered straight to your inbox? Subscribe to iseekgolf.com newsletters.