Kang shoots 63, sets Houston Open 36-hole record

Posted April 02, 2017

Sung Kang's six-stroke lead through 36 holes at the Shell Houston Open would seem large enough to let the 29-year-old South Korean native start looking into flights from Texas to Augusta, Ga.

Kang is among the 115 players who need a victory to qualify for Augusta National, as Jim Herman did by winning in Houston past year.

Kang was at 16-under 128 through two rounds, breaking the 36-hole tournament record of 129 set previously by Blaine McCallister in 1993 and Curtis Strange in 1980.

"I just putted a little better than yesterday, plus I was first off so the greens were really pure and I rolled it really nicely and they kept going in", Kang told Sky Sports 4.

Blair totaled five birdies in the second round to finish with a two-day total of 8-under 136.

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Kang matched Fowler with eight birdies and was poised to share the first-round lead until a three-putt from 42 feet on the 18th hole and settled for a 65.

Rahm has opened the year well, winning at Torrey Pines and sharing third at the WGC Mexico event before losing the Match Play final.

Rickie Fowler enters his seventh Masters Tournament with the knowledge that if he's leading after three rounds, he now has some history of bringing it home for a victory.

Two-time major victor and Texas native Jordan Spieth returned an opening 69, while three-time Masters champion Phil Mickelson had to settle for a level-par 72. "I have a lot of good stuff going on; family is great, friends are great, plus I've been able to put in some really good work in the gym".

Phil Mickelson, who won the event in 2011, is among those golfers at par.

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After an early end to Thursday's play and a late start Friday for cleanup from the windstorm, play was halted by darkness with 56 players still on the course.

The LPGA temporarily suspended play with half of the field still on the Dinah Shore Course at the first major of the season.

Texans Jordan Spieth and Jimmy Walker finished at 69, five shots behind Fowler. The two-time PGA Tour major championship victor hasn't finished higher than 23rd on the Champions Tour so far this season.

Mickelson is one of the players that loves to tee it up in Houston the week before the Masters because the course here mimics Augusta National - big-shouldered holes bordered by relatively light rough and tight lies around the sloping, super-quick, putting surfaces.

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