Sweden’s Henrik Stenson, the highest-ranked player in the field, shot a three-under par 68 to gain on leader Marcus Fraser in the second round of the Olympics at the Olympic Golf Course in Rio de Janeiro on Friday.
Stenson, No. 5 in the World Ranking, birdied three of his last four holes and now trails leader Marcus Fraser of Australia by two. Fraser followed his opening-round of 63 with a two-under par 69 and finished 36-holes at 10-under par 132.
“In the beginning it was tough conditions, raining hard, and I just made some bombs and probably made the par of my life on the third hole,” Stenson said.
Stenson, in the rain, holed a 58-foot birdie putt at the second hole, then holed a 109-foot birdie putt at the third hole to save par.
“It was hard to get into that round with that start and tough conditions,” Stenson said. “Bit of a mixed bag out there, but I’m at the races. I’m happy where I’m at halfway through the tournament.”
Belgium’s Thomas Pieters, meanwhile, shot a five-under par 66 and is in second, one stroke behind Fraser. England’s Justin Rose and France’s Gregory Bourdy are tied for fourth, four strokes off the lead.
The U.S. contingent, meanwhile, was playing marginally better, but none of the four are yet in contention. Matt Kuchar shot 70 and is at three under, seven back, while Bubba Watson is eight back following a 67. Patrick Read shot a 69 and is nine back, while Rickie Fowler shot an even-par 71 and is 14 behind Fraser.