Te Puke professional Jared Pender has shown his class to take a four-shot lead going into the weekend at The Carrus Open on the Jennian Homes Charles Tour.
Playing at the Tauranga Golf Club, Pender fired a second round of seven-under 63 to finish at 15-under at the midway point to be four clear of James Hydes.
Pender opened with a par on the 11th hole and then got into his work. He made birdies at the 12th and 16th holes and made the turn at two-under. He then lit up the back nine with birdies at the first, third, fourth, fifth, and seventh holes to sign for another incredible round.
“I got as much out of my game as I possibly could,” Pender said.
“My goal was to be under par through those back eight holes and I managed to get be a couple under. I then hit a couple of really good shots in the first five holes on the front nine and made four birdies.
“I just made sure I played some smart golf coming home. I’m happy with the score.”
He said the key to the weekend will be missing it in the right spots off the tee to ensure you have the best opportunity at birdies on the greens.
He expects low scores to continue rolling in over the weekend and won’t take his foot off the gas.
“The scoring is out there. You just need to leave the ball in the right place for your approaches into the green.”
Pender is balancing both work, golf, and family this week, and it appears to be paying dividends.
“The game plan is very much the same heading into tomorrow. Hopefully, the baby doesn’t wake me up at 4am tomorrow morning, it’d be nice to have a sleep in.
“I’ll work tomorrow morning and will do some chipping and putting out there after work, will come out and spend a few minutes putting here and go to the first tee,” he said.
He leads Hydes going into the weekend who will be looking to win his second Jennian Homes Charles Tour this year.
Hydes has carded rounds of 64 and 65 to be 11-under after two rounds. His form has been hot of late, and he looks forward to seeing what he can do over the weekend.
“I feel pretty consistent with my game at the moment. Obviously, I had some real good stuff at Muriwai which I then carried on to Pegasus so I’m just trying to ride the momentum. Everything feels really good.
“I’m hitting a lot of fairways and I didn’t make a bogey today which helps. It wasn’t anything special but I just added it up at the end,” Hydes said.
Leaderboard after round 2
125 Jared Pender (Te Puke) 62 63
129 James Hydes (Gulf Harbour Country Club) 64 65
131 Jim Cusdin (Tauranga) 65 66, Ryan Chisnall (PGA New Zealand) 62 69
132 Darae Chung (Shandon) 64 68, Trent Munn (Manawatu) 62 70
133 Tae Koh (Windross Farm Golf Course) 67 66, Michael Hendry (PGA New Zealand) 67 66, Jimmy Zheng (Howick) 66 67, Josh Geary (PGA New Zealand) 65 68, Munchin Keh (P) 64 69, Woonchul Na (PGA New Zealand) 64 69