Hideki Matsuyama shot a 2-under-par 68 on Friday to seize a one-stroke lead after the second round of the Zozo Championship in Chiba, Japan.
Matsuyama, who won the Masters in April, recorded three birdies against one bogey on Friday in cold and wet conditions at Narashino Country Club. The 29-year-old Japan native is bidding for his seventh PGA Tour victory.
“It wasn’t a perfect round, but I played well. I’m happy with it,” Matsuyama said. “I’m in a good position. Looking forward to the weekend and (will) do my best.”
Cameron Tringale ascended into second place after carding a birdie in his final hole to finish with a 66 on Friday.
Tringale is one stroke ahead of Brendan Steele (68) and England’s Matt Wallace (69), who birdied his final three holes. Wallace is seeking his first PGA Tour victory, while Steele is bidding for his fourth.
“I’m from California, I do not play in the rain. When it rains, I stay inside,” Steele said.
“My game doesn’t usually translate that well to the weather … I was just happy to hold it together today.”
Joaquin Niemann of Chile answered an opening-round 64 with a 71 on Friday to reside tied with England’s Tommy Fleetwood (68), three strokes off the pace. Fleetwood received a sponsor exemption to compete in the tournament.
First-round leader Hiroshi Iwata of Japan (73) sits in a six-way tie for seventh place at 4-under 136.
Iwata was added to the field on Monday as an alternate following the withdrawal of Kevin Na.
Iwata made his first start since 2017. He missed the cut in eight of his past 10 PGA Tour events.
World No. 3 Collin Morikawa recorded five birdies against a double bogey and bogey to sit in a tie for 20th place at 1-under 139.
–Field Level Media
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