Alexander Levy six shots clear as Robert Karlsson flirts with 59 in Germany
By Keith Jackson
Last Updated: 25/09/16 10:19pm
Alexander Levy opened up a commanding six-shot lead while Robert Karlsson gave himself a chance to shoot a magical 59 as the Porsche European Open suffered further fog delays on day two.
Ryder Cup star Martin Kaymer thrilled his home fans at Bad Griesbach as he surged into a share of second place with a barrage of birdies, although it was Karlsson who set the pulses racing late in the day as he reached 10 under for his second round with five holes remaining.
But, needing two more birdies over the closing holes to break 60, the Swedish veteran missed a short putt for par at the fifth - his 14th - and he misread a 10-footer for birdie on the sixth moments after the klaxons had sounded to end play for the day.
Karlsson, who completed a two-under 69 when the delayed first round concluded earlier in the day, began his second round at the 10th and birdied four of his first five holes before further gains at 17 and 18 capped a back-nine 30.
The 47-year-old added another birdie at the first before holing a tricky, curling putt for a superb eagle at the third, and he converted from eight feet on the next green only to lip out for par from inside three feet at the fifth.
Karlsson's par at the sixth left him needing to birdie his last three holes for a 59, although he would not go down as the first player to achieve the feat in a European Tour event as organisers were forced to implement preferred lies.
The former Ryder Cup star ended the day in a share of second with Kaymer, who also made a flying start to his second round after carding an opening 67, rolling in five birdies over his first seven holes and picking up three more on the front nine while dropping only one shot at the fourth.
The home favourite has only the ninth to play when play resumes on Saturday morning, and Ross Fisher has three holes remaining after he followed an opening 65 with five birdies in a flawless second round.
But all three are a distant second to runaway leader Levy, who has made a remarkable 17 birdies in 35 holes while keeping a bogey off his card so far.
The Frenchman rounded off an opening 62 with three straight birdies, and he carried that momentum into his second round as he reeled off another three in a row from the 10th and added a pair of twos at the 14th and 17th holes to turn in 31.
Levy, without a win since the 2014 Portugal Masters, continued to pull clear of the pack with further birdies at the first and second, and he carded his fourth two of the round at the short seventh before failing to take advantage of the par-five eighth in fading light.
With fog causing a lengthy suspension in play for the second morning running, England's Matthew Southgate was one of a handful of players to complete 36 holes on Friday, and commendable rounds of 66 and 67 earned him the overnight clubhouse lead on nine under par.
But half the field have yet to begin their second rounds, including Bernd Wiesberger who was just a shot adrift of Levy after his entertaining eight-under 63 which included an eagle, nine birdies, one bogey and a double-bogey six at the first.
While Kaymer was impressing before he heads to Hazeltine, his Ryder Cup team-mate Thomas Pieters needs to avoid any mistakes over the remaining two holes of his second round to avoid missing the cut.
The young Belgian made a positive start with three birdies over his first five holes before he responded to a bogey at 18 with birdies at the first and second to move to four under par, but another blemish at the fifth left him right on the cut line overnight.