BRIDGEND, Wales — Bernhard Langer has a seven-stroke cushion to take into the third round of the Senior British Open after shooting 5-under-par 66 Friday to add to his opening 65.
The German is at 11-under 131 overall at a sunny Royal Porthcawl with Colin Montgomerie and Chris Williams tied for second at 4-under 138.
Montgomerie shot 66 while Williams added 70 to his opening 68.
Langer was beaten in a playoff by Mark Wiebe in last year’s championship at Royal Birkdale after blowing a two-stroke lead on the final hole when he failed to get out of a greenside bunker.
“It still hurts when I think about it,” Langer said. “If you put me in that situation a hundred times, I think I would win 98 or 99.”
Langer started with a bogey five at the opening hole when he pulled a 4-iron into a bad lie, hit his second over the green and didn’t get up and down.
He recovered with three straight birdies from the fourth, hitting a sand-wedge to six feet, a 3-iron to seven feet and chipped his third to three feet on the par-five sixth and sank it.
Two more birdies came at Nos. 11 and 12, he saved his par at the 14th with a 15-foot putt, then hit a drive and a 5-iron to 10 feet at the 18th and just missed his eagle attempt.
LPGA TOUR: In Owings Mills, Md., the United States shuffled its lineup in the second round of the International Crown and got the desired result, beating Spain twice to earn its first points in the eight-country competition.
Lexi Thompson and Cristie Kerr took control on the back nine against Belen Mozo and Beatriz Recari in a 3-and-2 win, and Paula Creamer and Stacy Lewis held on to beat Azahara Munoz and Carlota Ciganda 2 up.
One day earlier, the top-seeded U.S. lost twice to Taiwan and was the only country without a point.
EUROPEAN TOUR: In Moscow, David Horsey shot a second-round 68 for a two-stroke lead at the halfway mark of the Russian Open.
The 29-year-old Englishman dropped two shots in his first four holes but then birdied four of the last six to move to 11 under in sunny conditions on the Tseleevo Golf and Polo Club course near Moscow.
The double European Tour winner – just one of three players inside the world’s top 200 competing here – is clear of Belgium rookie Thomas Pieters who also shot 68.
R&A VOTE: The Royal & Ancient Golf Club will hold a postal vote on whether to admit women members for the first time, rather than limiting the vote to members attending in person.
The club says “by taking this decision all members can take part in this historic vote.”
Club rules previously required members to be present to vote. R&A secretary Peter Dawson said last week at the British Open that “it’s clear that the majority of R&A members feel that postal voting would be appropriate in this case.”
The result will be announced on Sept. 18.
The 260-year-old club has about 2,400 members around the world.