Stanley, Oosthuizen share lead at Players Championship


Kyle Stanley and Louis Oosthuizen share the lead at the halfway point of the Players Championship

Stanley, 29, is a PGA Tour winner who has struggled to find consistent form in recent seasons, but he was sharp on Friday, shooting a six-under 66 with eight birdies and two bogeys to climb to nine under.

"You have to pick and choose your spots for sure. There are a few birdie holes out here, but for the most part we have just been focused on getting birdie opportunities," Stanley told the Golf Channel. "I'm happy with where my game is at right now."

Oosthuizen, the 2010 Open Championship winner, vaulted up the leaderboard with a bogey-free 66. He has just one bogey through the first 36 holes.

J.B. Holmes bogeyed his last two holes Friday to fall back to seven under.

Using his length to take advantage of firm conditions at TPC Sawgrass, Holmes momentarily held the lead at nine under before bogeying holes eight and nine to finish his second round.

Holmes has not finished in the top 10 since a tied for fourth at the BMW Championship last year.

Vijay Singh, who came into the event having missed nine cuts in his past 10 tournaments, moved into outright fourth at six under thanks to a four-under 68.

Patrick Cantlay leads a group tied for fifth at five under, alongside Rafa Cabrera Bello, Alex Noren, David Hearn and Ian Poulter.

Jon Rahm struggled with his putter early on Friday, but he is still in contention at four under.

The Spaniard, 22, has already proven he is one of the most dangerous and consistent players on Tour.

Henrik Stenson, Adam Scott, Phil Mickelson and Jason Day all finished their second rounds at two under.

Though seven shots back, they could climb up the leaderboard in a hurry, as positions often change quickly at this course.

Another group of notables are at even par. Rory McIlroy, who is dealing with lingering back discomfort, Dustin Johnson, Rickie Fowler, Justin Thomas, Masters champion Sergio Garcia and former Players winners Matt Kuchar and Martin Kaymer are all nine shots back heading into the weekend.

Jordan Spieth missed his third straight cut at the Players by shooting a three-over 75 to finish four over for the tournament. Spieth had a chance to rally late, but he made a disappointing par on the par-five 16th and then found water on 17, leading to a double bogey.