WITH the weather clearing in Bury St Edmunds, the second round of The Swallow Hotels Open was completed by 4pm on Friday afternoon, by which time Limerick’s Tim Rice had established a one-shot lead.
A phenomenal total of nine birdies gave him an eight-under-par round of 64 after just one bogey.
Mark Smith of Erewash Valley remained firmly in contention with a 65 which included two eagles, a birdie and a bogey whilst Matthew Woods (Newbury Golf Centre) shot the same score thanks to seven birdies.
Smith is only a single shot behind with Woods a further stroke back, but then a gap of three shots has opened up to Graham Rankin (Drumpellier) who is back on eight-under-par despite eight birdies in a round which had a disappointing end of a double bogey on 18.
The other player celebrating was Andrew Willey (Nottingham City/Tiny Dog Records) who fired a hole-in-one on the 12th to secure his place at the end of season Tour Championship.
53 players made the cut for the final round – also to be completed on Friday.