Miguel Angel Jimenez opens up two-shot advantage at Austrian Open
By Ali Stafford
Last Updated: 10/07/20 7:34pm
Miguel Angel Jimenez has an opportunity to break his own record as the oldest European Tour winner after taking a two-shot lead into the weekend at the Austrian Open.
The 56-year-old mixed 10 birdies with three bogeys in a vintage display at Diamond Country Club to card a seven-under 65 and move top of the leaderboard on 11 under in Atzenbrugg.
Victory would see Jimenez break the oldest European Tour winner record for a fourth time, six years on from registering a 21st title - aged 50 years and 133 days - at the 2014 Open de Espana.
The Spaniard, who helped redesign this week's venue in 2010, is two clear of overnight leader Joost Luiten, Scottish pair Marc Warren and Craig Howie, Italy's Renato Paratore and Germany's Nicolai Von Dellinghausen.
"I'm playing very well," Jimenez said. "It feels great. Four months without competing, it's nice getting back into a tournament and feeling the tension again. I'm hitting it well and making some putts, not too many bogeys - that's the key."
Jimenez made a fast start with three birdies in his opening four holes, before cancelling out a blemish at the fifth by picking up a shot at the sixth and posting back-to-back gains from the eighth.
After turning in 31, Jimenez posted further birdies at the 11th and 13th and holed a long-range par-save after a wayward tee shot at the 14th, only to card successive bogeys at the 16th and 17th.
Jimenez then struck a superb approach into the par-three last to set up a close-range birdie, which saw him move two ahead when Van Dellinghausen closed his second-round 67 with a final-hole bogey.
Luiten recovered from a triple-bogey at the seventh to make three consecutive birdies on his back nine and sign for a two-under 70, with Warren and Howie also on nine under after matching 69s.
Paratore completes the quintet sharing second, with Darius van Driel three strokes back in seventh spot and Scotland's Connor Syme in the group for off the pace on eight under.