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Brilliant Dyson keeps hopes of retaining his title alive; GOLF: Omega Hong Kong Open.

Byline: PHIL CASEY in Hong Kong

YORKSHIRE'S Simon Dyson kept alive his hopes of defending his Omega Hong Kong Open title with a brilliant second round in Fanling.

Dyson added a superb 64 to his opening 67 at the Hong Kong Golf Club for an 11-under-par total of 131 and share of third place, two shots behind Taiwan's Wei-Tze Yeh.

Yeh went one better than Dyson with a brilliant 63, one outside the course record, that even included a double bogey six on the first, with Zaw Moe from Myanmar in second spot one stroke behind.

Dyson was part of a six-way tie for third along with Australian Adam Scott, Swedish pair Carl Pettersson and Anders Forsbrand, England's Mark Foster and Ireland's Paul McGinley.

Wales's Stephen Dodd fought his way back into contention with one of the rounds of the day yesterday, but Mark Mouland failed to build on his promising first round.

Dodd, who might have expected to have been battling to avoid the cut after a disappointing opening-day 71, bounced back with an excellent 65 to stand seven points off the lead overnight.

Mouland followed a 67 with a disappointing 71 to beat the cut by only two shots.

Victory here 12 months ago, with rounds of 64 on Thursday and Sunday, clinched the Asian Tour Order of Merit for Dyson and he was delighted to be back in contention after a disappointing year by his own high standards on the European Tour, where he finished 87th on the money list.

The 23-year-old could have been sitting pretty at the top of the leaderboard after leaving a handful of birdie putts inches short of the hole and he said, "If I'd just hit them that little bit harder the score would have been frightening, but I'm well pleased with a 64.

"I'm playing really nice and holing putts as well. I'm really looking forward to the weekend. After having not such a great year, it's nice to be back up there.

"The last time I was in contention was in Portugal this year back in April which is a long time."

To his surprise, if that of no-one else, McGinley remained firmly in contention for the title despite feeling the effects of this year's long, and ultimately successful, campaign to qualify for the Ryder Cup.

A first-round 65 left him one shot off the lead, however, and a secondround 66 yesterday saw him join Dyson in third place.

"Again, I made my score on the par fives, four under for them, and one under for the rest, " said McGinley, who hit a drive of 360 yards on the par-five ninth, his final hole, to leave him just a seven-iron second shot to the 493-yard hole to set up his sixth birdie of the day.

"I'm hitting them in two and it makes a huge difference. That's the reason, I'm playing steady, nothing special and the par fives are helping me out.

"I'm very surprised, particularly with the greens, because I putted atrociously last week in Japan on similar greens so maybe I've learnt something last week.

"The scoring is going to be really hot on the weekend and it's going to be better than 20-under-par the winning score.

"I don't know if I can find the extra gears this weekend to keep in contention but if I can play the par fives as well as I have been I should be able to compete. They've been kind to me."

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BATTLING DISPLAY: Stephen Dodd back in contention
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Dec 1, 2001
Words:590
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