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Red-Hot Schwartzel Ties Bourdy for Lead in Dunhill Championship


Charl Schwartzel is on a roll. After winning last week's Thailand Golf Championship by a whopping 11 strokes, the 2011 Masters' champion is now tied for the 36-hole lead with first-round pacesetter France's Gregory Bourdy in the Alfred Dunhill Championship. The European Tour event began Thursday at Leopard Creek Country Club in Malelane, South Africa.

After opening with a 67, the 28-year-old Johannesburg native carded an 8-under 64 to tie Bourdy at 13-under 131. The 30-year-old Bourdy, a three-time winner in Europe, has posted rounds of 66 and 65.

On Friday, Schwartzel carded six birdies and an eagle on the par-5 18th, which was his ninth hole after he began play on the 10th tee. "It was a very solid round," Schwartzel said. "I made hardly any mistakes and got away with the odd bad shot.

"It's out there. If you are playing par-5s well and hitting the fairways you can hit some good shots into the greens. I've not driven as well as I did a couple of weeks ago, but I'm hitting good iron shots and felling good with the putter."

Bourdy also carded an eagle Friday, with his coming on the short par-4 sixth. "It's going to be an exciting weekend," Bourdy said. "Charl is a great player, one of the best in the world. In South Africa it's always nice to play with some of the top players in the world on Saturday and Sunday. I like these guys, so it should be a great time."

Four shots behind the leaders is South African Richard Fichardt (68), while five behind are Louis de Jager (69) and England's Steve Webster (69).

South Africans Branden Grace, a four-time winner in 2012, stands at 5-under, while Louis Oosthuizen has shot rounds of 73 and 67.

Peter Uihlein, the 2010 U.S. Amateur champion now playing regularly on the European Tour, followed up his opening 70 and with a 73.

For all the scores, visit http://www.europeantour.com/europeantour/season=2013/tournamentid=2012096/leaderboard/index.html?showLeaderboard=Y.