Lee Westwood shines in Round 2 at Made in Denmark 

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Lee Westwood shines in Round 2 at Made in Denmark 

Euro Tour

Lee Westwood shines in Round 2 at Made in Denmark 

Normally a European Ryder Cup captain would be ecstatic to see Lee Westwood’s name near the top of a leaderboard in the last qualifying event prior to the biennial match.

Pity the Englishman Westwood will only see sideline action at Le Golf National, Paris.

Westwood, 46, is just two shots off lead in the $1.75 million Made in Denmark tournament at Silkeborg Ry Golf Club in Aarhus, Denmark. He’s 11 under par with countryman Jonathan Thomson, two shots behind South African Christiaan Bezuidenhout. Former Florida State player Sam Horsfield is a further shot back in fourth place after consecutive 67s.

Westwood returned a bogey free 7-under 65 to jump into contention. Westwood will be in Paris, but only as one of Thomas Bjorn’s five vice-captains. Even a win probably won’t be enough to get him an 11th consecutive Ryder Cup appearance.

The real race for spots is being played out behind Westwood. Thorbjorn Olesen holds the last automatic place in Bjorn’s team, but can lose his spot should Matt Fitzpatrick or Eddie Pepperell win.

Pepperell has a slightly better chance of that than Fitzpatrick over the weekend. Pepperell played the first two rounds with Bjorn, and is tied with his potential captain on 5 under.

“I would need to get to at least 15, 16 under par and that’s 10, 12 under for the weekend,” Pepperell said. “I can do that. I’m definitely hitting enough good shots.”

Fitzpatrick is a shot further back on 4-under. “Obviously I need a very low scoring weekend to win, but that is not impossible,” he said. “It will take a silly low weekend, though. I think if I could shoot a couple of 64s then I would have a chance.”

Olesen will at least be around for the weekend to watch Pepperell and Fitzpatrick’s progress. He rallied from an opening 73 to shoot 69 and make the 2-under cut on the number.

Potential wild card pick Thomas Pieters is six shots off the lead in a tie for 9th place on 7-under.

Bezuidenhout needs a good week to keep his card for next year. He’s currently ranked 107 on the money list with the top 110 retaining playing rights for 2019.

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