Phoenix Open: Branden Grace enjoying his first outing at the Waste Management

first_img Phoenix Open: Rickie Fowler, Justin Thomas in 3-way tie for lead “I’ve always watched this event and I’ve always felt like this is one I want to come play, but it’s never really fit into the schedule,” Grace said after his round. “This was a very last-minute call for me this year. … I played San Diego last week, which I really wanted to play, and I played badly. I thought to myself just enter for this week. … I just had a feeling I should play.”His second round was highlighted with a hole-in-one on a par 3. No, it wasn’t the par-3 16, and Grace wouldn’t have known what to do if it was. Related News Phoenix Open: Phil Mickelson, Gary Woodland, Jon Rahm reflect on favorite 16th hole memories He carded an eagle on the par-5 13th and made a 6-foot putt for par on 14, which he called a momentum changer. Grace had three consecutive birdies before finishing with par on 18 and a two-shot lead over the competition when he signed his scorecard.2️⃣ eagles1️⃣ hole-in-one1️⃣ double bogey2️⃣-shot lead👏 Have yourself a day, @BrandenGrace. 👏#LiveUnderPar— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) February 1, 2019″I’m glad I made the trip and it’s lived up to everything, I’ll tell you that much,” Grace said.center_img First, he wasn’t anticipating a large Friday crowd.”I thought it can’t be that bad this morning when I was warming up,” Grace said. “But 7 o’clock when those gates opened, guys were running to that 16, screaming, going crazy already and I knew it was going to be a loud one.”A birdie on golf’s loudest hole …To extend the [email protected] is going strong @WMPhoenixOpen. #LiveUnderPar— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) February 1, 2019Second, he didn’t have the moves.”I tell you, I don’t know what I would have done,” he said. “I don’t have the best dance moves.”Grace, who last won on Tour in 2016, holed out from the tee box on the par-3 seventh hole for a spotless front nine, but later double-bogeyed the par-4 11th. “I think it was really important to stay patient after the double bogey on 11,” he said. “That could have really backfired, could have really put my round back to the negative, but I kept hitting the ball well and the one key for the day was on the 14th hole.” SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Branden Grace was the clubhouse leader by the time temperature rose and the morning pairings finished their rounds Friday at the Waste Management Phoenix Open.The South African got off to a good start Thursday and continued his success at TPC Scottsdale, carding a 7-under 64 to take an early lead in round two. Grace has never been to the nosiest tournament on Tour, but he has been enjoying his stay.last_img read more