Matt Fitzpatrick climbs leader board to third place after two rounds of Thailand Championship

Sheffield's Matt Fitzpatrick lies third in the Thailand Championship after two rounds.
Sheffield's Matt Fitzpatrick lies third in the Thailand Championship after two rounds.

SHEFFIELD'S Matt Fitzpatrick carded five birdies in seven holes in the middle of his round to move up to third at the halfway stage of the Thailand Championship at the Amata Spring Country Club.

The 21-year-old trails leader Jamie Donaldson, of Wales, by four shots after adding a five-under-par 67 to his opening 68.

He birdied holes five, seven, eight, 10 and 11 before playing the last seven holes in level par, with a birdie at the 15th negated by a bogey at 17.

“It was very warm today. I got off to a slow start on the first nine and then had to have a think and got refocused after that," said Fitzpatrick.

"Three birdies in the last five were a good way to finish (the outward half), as was with the five-under."

The British Masters champion already has 10 top-10 finishes - a record for a rookie on the European Tour - and has moved into the world's top 50 in his first full year as a professional tournament golfer.

He said: “Consistency has been the key this year. I’ve been trying to do all the right things this year and with the right team around me it’s working. So I’ll just keep on doing that.

“The plan has been working and has got me to nine under so far. A four-under, five-under weekend would hopefully not leave me too far away."

Overnight leader Donaldson scored a four-under-par 68 to add to his 63.

The Welshman has a two-day total of 13-under-par 131 and a two-shot advantage over closest rival Martin Kaymer of Germany, who had a 65.

Spain’s Sergio Garcia also lived up to his billing as one of the pre-tournament favourites by signing for a 69 to stay within sights of Donaldson, trailing him by five shots alongside Fitzpatrick on the $1m Asian Tour event.