LONGKOU CITY, China (AP) — Shohei Hasegawa of Japan and Lee Chang-woo of South Korea battled 25 mph gusts and temperatures in the mid-50s to share the lead going into the final two rounds of the Asia-Pacific Amateur.
At stake is a spot in the Masters for the winner, along with an exemption into a final qualifying event for the British Open.
Hasegawa, a 21-year-old student at Osaka Gakuin University, had three birdies for a 1-under 70. Lee was even more impressive by running off 15 consecutive pars and then a birdie on the 16th hole at Nanshan International, giving him a two-shot lead. He bogeyed his last two holes to fall into a tie with Hasegawa.
They were at even-par 142, an indication of the demanding conditions.
Guan Tianlang, the defending champion who made the cut at the Masters this year, celebrated his 15th birthday on Friday with a second straight 74. That left the Chinese teen six shots behind. In this weather, the winner could be the player who loses the least amount of ground over the final 36 holes of stroke play.
"If the conditions stay the same, I don't think really low scores are possible," said Hasegawa, who has made the cut in three Japan Golf Tour events this year. "The key is knowing which holes to attack and which holes to be conservative."
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