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May 4 2012

10:19 PM

Quail Hollow brings best out in Cink

By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- A year ago, Stewart Cink was four shots off the lead at the midway point of the Wells Fargo Championship.

He cut that deficit in half on Friday as Cink fired a 69 to move to 10 under, which is two strokes behind Nick Watney. Cink, who is tied with Ben Crane, D.A. Points and John Senden, flirted with the lead, too, until closing with two bogeys.

"I was very pleased overall, and finishing like that is not what you want to do, of course, but they're tough holes and I missed a short putt on 18, which kind of stinks," Cink said. "But looking at it as a whole, I think overall very pleased, and I probably would have taken 10 under for two rounds before we teed off Thursday. I'm looking forward to it. It's a good challenge and a good chance for me to get some feedback on what I'm doing."

The last time Cink, who has been tinkering with his swing, opened with two rounds in the 60s this year came at the Farmers Insurance Open in January. Cink, who shot a first-round 65 that was his lowest round in nearly a year, went on to tie for 13th there, which is his best finish of the season.

"I knew today was going to be a tough day for me because it's been a while since I was in that position, up near the lead after a day," Cink said. "So I really had to go out with a clear game plan, and I did. I went out and accomplished my game plan pretty well, stayed in the moment for the most part. ...   Today was a solid day with not a great ending, but overall pretty good."

Playing Quail Hollow may have helped, too. Cink's last top-10 finish happened to have come in this tournament last year when he tied for ninth.

"I love playing here," the former British Open champ said. "This is a great golf course to play. It definitely puts a premium on focus. There's a lot of danger out there to sort of navigate through. I don't know, it seems to heighten my level of awareness of what I'm doing out there, my game plan."

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