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Grillo Enjoys Four-Stroke Advantage in Perth International


Emiliano Grillo of Argentina followed up his opening 66 with a 5-under 67 to take a four-shot lead in the Perth International. The $2 million event, co-sanctioned by the PGA Tour of Australasia and European Tour, started Thursday at Lake Karrinyup Country Club in western Australia.

The 20-year-old Grillo, a European Tour rookie in search of his first title, carded four birdies, an eagle on the par-4 ninth when his 100-yard approach landed six feet past the hole and spun back into the cup, and a lone bogey to reach 11-under 133, four strokes clear of Australia's Jason Scrivener (69) and American Bo Van Pelt (67).

"I think I hit it better yesterday than today, but a couple of eagles and a hole-out from the bunker helped a lot," Grillo said. "Just go shot by shot, that's the main goal. You cannot think about the third hole when you're playing the second hole. It's the hardest thing in golf probably, but it's the best thing to do."

Van Pelt, whose only victory on the PGA Tour came in the 2009 U.S. Bank Championship in Milwaukee but who has 10 top-10 finishes in 24 starts this year for $3,043,509 in earnings, carded seven birdies and two bogeys.

"It was a solid day," said the Indiana native. "I would say the biggest difference from today from yesterday, I think I played the par-5s 5-under. I think I only missed three greens, so I was driving the ball in play, and was able to take advantage of the par-5s."

Fellow American Jason Dufner, who opened with a 71, also shot a 67 to take a share of fourth with Spain's Alejandro Canizares, New Zealand's Michael Hendry and Max McCardle (70) of Australia.

Canizares, a 29-year-old Madrid native, began the second round tied for the lead with Hendry after each opened with a 65, but both players posted a 73 Friday.

The cut line was set at 2-over 146. Among those heading home is South African Charl Schwartzel. The 2011 Masters champion opened with a 71 but posted a 76 Friday. Schwartzel had a chance to make the cut right on the number, but missed a five-footer on his final hole (the ninth).

"It was a pretty much straightforward putt and it bounced out of line," Schwartzel said. "Nothing I can do about it. I figured if I could have just made the cut, you can still win the tournament . . . I'm disappointed the way I've played, but I've had a great time."

Although he shot a 3-over 75 after starting with a 67, England's Paul Casey made the cut by four strokes. Casey has returned to competitive golf following a shoulder injury that sidelined him for much of the year.

For all the scores, visit http://www.pga.org.au/scores/1043.