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Page last updated at 21:21 GMT, Friday, 17 July 2009 22:21 UK

Wood loves wild, windy Turnberry

The 138th Open, Turnberry
Date: 16-19 July
Coverage: Live TV coverage on BBC Two, Online and the Red Button, live on Radio 5 Live and text commentary online on all four days

By Ged Scott
BBC Sport at Turnberry

Chris Wood
Wood is confident he can maintain an under-par performance

Chris Wood might have come off the Ailsa course feeling a bit under the weather after a day exposed to the Turnberry wind.

But, after heading Swindon's David Howell and Cheltenham's Paul Casey in making the Open Championship halfway cut, he admitted he has fallen in love with the place.

"You'd never want to lose Turnberry," the young Bristol man told BBC Sport.

"It's a pleasure to play. It's the best course I've ever played."

After shooting a second successive 70, Wood made it through to the weekend with what appeared at first glance a comfortable four-shot cushion.

But he admitted the mental challenge of negotiating his way round the majestic course had helped leave him with a headache.

"This week has been fantastic," he said. "You couldn't ask for better scenery, the course is in great condition and the way they've set up the rough really gives you something to think about on every hole.

I just need a good night's sleep and hope to wake up feeling a bit better

Chris Wood

"I felt like I played absolutely awful but it was a great mental day for me.

"It was the worst I've felt and played on a course for ages. I've got a splitting headache and indigestion. And I think it's down to the wind being so strong.

"It can deyhydrate without you realising it. But I just need a good night's sleep and hope to wake up feeling a bit better.

"And, if I can shoot level playing the way I have today, I don't see any reason why I can't be under par over the weekend."

Wood coped with worse weather than this to produce that memorable fifth-placed finish at Royal Birkdale a year ago to win him The Silver Medal for being the top amateur.

A shot behind Wood on one over was Howell, who was "reasonably happy" despite following such an encouraging first-day 68 with a three-over 73.

Dropped shots

"Where I have been with my game," he told BBC Sport, "I've got to be happy to be six off the lead at the halfway stage in a major."

Three bogeys took him to the turn in 38, but he cancelled out two more dropped shots with a couple of birdies on the back nine to come home in 35.

Casey, by contrast, just sneaked in four over.

Having gone to the turn the previous day in 31, Casey was this time undone by a nightmare front nine.

After opening with three pars, he then dropped a shot at 4, two more at 5, another at 6, birdied 7, suffered another double at 8 and then bogeyed the ninth too to go out in 41.

You've got to drive it well round here to score and I got found out

Steve Surry

One more dropped shot came at 10 but a birdie four at the long 17th proved enough to sneak him on four over.

The one West Country man to miss out on the weekend was Wiltshire hopeful Steve Surry.

After his highly encouraging first-day 69, Surry found the tougher day two conditions a lot more testing as he blew up with an 81 to miss the cut by six shots.

Three shots went in his first five holes, at the second, the fourth and the fifth - and he then double-bogeyed the eight to go out in 40.

"Six of the front nine holes are straight into the wind," said the Bath-born man from Cumberwell Park. "And I missed every fairway.

"But you've got to drive it well round here to score and I got found out.

"I hit the ball really well yesterday but didn't play as well today and suddenly you're 12 shots worse."



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