Jason Day one shot ahead at halfway stage of the Masters as Tianlang Guan makes cut
Jason Day claimed the halfway lead at the Masters on a second day of drama involving Tianlang Guan at Augusta.
Last Updated: 13/04/13 2:42am
Day carded a four-under 68 to take a one-shot lead over the evergreen Fred Couples and first-round co-leader Marc Leishman, while Guan became the youngest player in Masters history to make the cut despite being punished for slow play.
The 14-year-old received warnings on the 12th and 16th holes before European Tour chief referee John Paramor issued a one-shot penalty after Guan played his approach to the 17th.
But his battling 75 was just enough to squeeze in for the weekend on four over along with defending champion Bubba Watson, while Tiger Woods faltered down the stretch after sharing the lead with four to play.
Couples was the first man into the clubhouse on five under after he recovered from a double-bogey six at the seventh to birdie eight, 12 and 18 and salvage an excellent 71.
He was later joined by Leishman as the Australian ground out a workmanlike 73, while Woods and Day made it a four-way tie at the top in the closing stages of the round.
But Woods endured a bad break at the 15th when his pitch hit the flagstick and spun back into the water, although he did well to get up and down to limit the damage to a bogey.
However, the world No 1 then three-putted the final green to post a 71 and finish three behind Day, who took advantage of the better conditions for the later starters to return a six-birdie card.
The 2011 runner-up atoned for a bogey at the fourth with birdies at five, seven, 10 and 11 before a misjudgement at the 12th cost him a shot.
But he responded with well-crafted birdies at 13 and 16, and the players at four over breathed a huge sigh of relief when he failed to birdie the last hole.
Former champion Angel Cabrera made a welcome return to form as he birdied five of the last six holes to card a 69 which swept him to four under alongside Jim Furyk and Brandt Snedeker.
Lee Westwood and Justin Rose ground out solid 71s to join fellow Englishman David Lynn on three under, while Rory McIlroy ignited an impressive charge with a rare eagle at the eighth.
The world No 2 looked in danger of missing the cut after bogeys at two of the first three holes, but he converted a sublime 275-yard approach to eight and also birdied 13, 14 and 18 to hand in a 70 - two under for the tournament.
But Sergio Garcia failed to build on his opening 66, finding water three times on the back nine as he stumbled to a 76, while Dustin Johnson dropped six shots over the last five holes to drop from seven under to one under par.