Magnificent McGowan surges into Joburg lead


Ross McGowan opened up a three-shot lead at the halfway stage of the Joburg Open with a stunning second-round 62.

McGowan only regained his European Tour card last November, having been hampered by injuries during a four-year spell in the golfing wilderness.

The Englishman recorded an encouraging 12th-placed finish in last week's South African Open Championship and will now have high hopes of claiming a second title - more than six years on from his breakthrough win at the 2009 Madrid Masters.

After making a hole-in-one at the fifth on Royal Johannesburg & Kensington's East Course 24 hours earlier, McGowan benefited from two eagles in the space of four holes over the West Course on Friday as he surged to 14 under for the tournament.

A two at the par-four 12th was followed by another two-shot gain on the 15th, helping the leader to come home in just 29 strokes.

Felipe Aguilar and Jean Hugo each shot 65 on the West Course to share second on 11 under with Haydn Porteous (66) and Anthony Wall (67).

Aguilar kept a bogey off his card, while Hugo started eagle, birdie and picked up a further four shots from the 13th before dropping one at the last.

While Hugo finished with a bogey, there was a contrasting finish for Wall on the East Course as he eagled the 18th following a superb approach shot.

Overnight leader Justin Walters could only manage a 69, which saw him slip back into a tie for eighth at nine under.