Tiger Woods delivered the shot that had the gallery buzzing. Dustin Johnson produced the golf that left everyone chasing him in Mexico City.
Johnson made it through another round at the World Golf Classic Mexico Championship without a bogey, and he was so efficient Friday that he putted for birdie on every hole. It added to a 4-under-par 67 and a two-shot lead over Rory McIlroy (70) and Matt Kuchar (67) after two rounds.
“Just hit a lot of fairways, hit a lot of greens,” Johnson said.
Woods started to figure out Chapultepec Golf Club in his second full round and made a collection of medium-length birdie putts for a 66 that got him back in the game, though he’s still six shots behind.
He would have liked one more, especially with the shot he hit at the end of his round. From a bunker right of the ninth fairway, and with a tree in his path, Woods sliced a 9-iron from about 130 yards that caught the left side of the green with so much spin that it zipped sideways at the pin and rolled 10 feet by. He settled for a par.
“The ball was sitting down just enough where I didn’t think I could clear that tree,” Woods said. “I ended up going back to the 9-iron and realized, ‘Geez, I’ve really got to slice this thing.’ So I opened up and gave it as much of a cut motion as I possibly could. And it worked out.”
Photo: Hector Vivas / Getty Images
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Johnson was at 11-under 131 on a course where he won two years ago, when he was No. 1 in the world and playing his best golf. Johnson feels he is heading in that direction again.
It was Tommy Fleetwood, though, who had the best start. Fleetwood drove onto the green at the par-4 opening hole and made a 20-foot eagle putt. He hit driver on the 384-yard second about 40 yards from the green and knocked that in for a second straight eagle.
It was the first time a player started a round eagle-eagle on the PGA Tour since Sean O’Hair in 2009 at this World Golf Championship when it was at Doral. Fleetwood wound up with a 65 that catapulted him into a tie for fourth with Sergio Garcia (66), four shots behind.
Rickie Fowler had a 73 and was left fuming after a penalty. Fowler hit a high shank over the fence on the 10th, but forgot the new rule that requires a drop to be made from the knee. He dropped from the shoulder.
He said it’s a “terrible” rule and expects it to be changed.
PGA Tour: D.J. Trahan birdied the final hole at windy Coco Beach Golf and Country Club for a 5-under 67 and a share of the second-round lead at 8-under 134 with Nate Lashley (68) in the Puerto Rico Open at Rio Grande.
LPGA Tour: South Korean golfer Jenny Shin snatched the lead at the LPGA Thailand with a birdie on the last hole of the second round at Siam Country Club Pattaya.
Her 4-under 68 put her at 11-under overall, one shot ahead of American Lizette Salas (68), Australia’s Minjee Lee (69), and first-round leader Eun-Hee Ji of South Korea (71).
This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/golf/article/Dustin-Johnson-builds-2-shot-lead-in-Mexico-as-13638691.php.