Lydia Hall of Wales fired a flawless four-under-par 68 on Friday to take a two-stroke lead in the Lalla Meryem Cup at Royal Golf Dar Es Salam in Rabat, Morocco
Hall, the 2012 ISPS HANDA Ladies British Masters champion, finished her second round on seven-under-par and two ahead of England’s Annabel Dimmock, with Norwegian Suzann Pettersen a stroke further behind in third place.
Hall carded birdies at the fifth and 10th to move ahead of the pack and then chipped in on 16, adding another birdie with an up and down from the trap on 17. “Looking at the scores, a couple of players were getting away with it on the front nine, but I knew that it’s a tough golf course and the wind would get up, so I needed to stay patient and not get ahead of myself ».
Dimmock also made the most of the perfect weather conditions to register a 69 on the Blue Course. She said: “It’s a bit of a shock because at the start of the week I was not hitting it well at all. After all the practise rounds and speaking to my coach, it’s a pleasant surprise, but I’ll take it. Nothing has really clicked and I’m just getting it round, really and I hit it better than expected. Even in my next tournament, if I am hitting it better, I’ll focus on getting it round rather than swing thoughts.”
Pettersen set the target earlier in the day after scrambling a 71 and she said: “This course is not easy to play from the rough. You’ve really got to hit fairways as the greens are so small and the rough is very unpredictable. I don’t think I’ve had one great lie where you feel that you can control the ball and the spin. I’ll keep hitting fairways and try to hit more greens than I did today »
For the first time, there will be two Moroccans in the field for the weekend, with Olympian Maha Haddioui tied for 23rd place on twoover-par and amateur Lina Belmati, 20, tied for 49th on five-over-par.