August 11 2018: On a weather-marred second day in the 100th PGA Championship, Anirban Lahiri suffered a back nine fate that could force him out of the weekend. Anirban made four bogeys in five holes, sliding from a comfortable one under to close at 3-over 143. Gary Woodland held steady to retain a one-shot advantage over the field, at 10-under 130. He made a 66 highlighted by an eagle at the 17th hole.
Meanwhile, Shubhankar Sharma remained clean and crisp, navigating through the 7th hole with six pars and a birdie. He is lying in T32 after improving to two under with eleven holes to play. The second round will resume on Saturday with groups of three starting from the first and tenth tees.
The projected cut at the moment is expected to fall at an even 140.
Anirban was playing pretty well on Friday before it got rough on the inward stretch. The sand traps hindered his progress at the first and fourth holes, ending in bogeys. But Anirban fought back resolutely, firing three birdies in four holes, starting at the 8th. That run included a near 30-footer at the ninth as he turned the tide in his favour.
Unfortunately, though, Anirban suffered immediately thereafter. He played his first two shots at the par-4 12th off the left rough, working his way through the intermediate to reach the green in four.
At the par-3 13th, Anirban landed his tee shot in the front side bunker. He extricated himself well though, leaving just under seven feet to save par. Unfortunately, the ball slid narrowly past the pin, accounting for a fourth bogey on the day.
Anirban made a fine putt from 15 feet on the 14th hole to make par but missed one from inside ten feet on the next hole to concede another bogey.
The 93rd ranked Indian compounded his misery, needing two putts from 11 feet on the 16th to slip to three over. Ironically, Anirban finished the round with a couple of brilliant putts from long range to set up tap in pars, but at three over through 36 holes, he was left dealing with the strife from another missed opportunity.
Tiger Woods had the crowds roaring late in the day when he sank three quick birdies, but he too was forced to return to the clubhouse after landing his tee shot off the 8th in the first cut.
“I’m 3-under par, so I felt I was headed in the right direction,” Woods said. “Tomorrow is going to be a long day for a lot of us and try and get back at it early tomorrow morning.”
“The good thing is we’re going to have the greens prepared before we go back out there to finish up our second round,” added Woods. “It would have been quite a bit different if we had to go back out this afternoon and finish it up. But the greens will be freshly cut, so it will be just like it was when we played on Thursday.”
Brooks Koepka and Charl Schwartzel fired major championship low scores of 63 each to jump up the leaderboard. The US Open champion is lying in the third spot, one behind Kevin Kisner, who made a brilliant 64.
Schwartzel is in T4 with Thomas Pieters and Rickie Fowler, all three men going into the weekend at 133.