April 26 2013
By Brian Allee-Walsh, PGATOUR.COM Correspondent
AVONDALE, La. -- Just two weeks after making a historic cut at the Masters, 14-year-old Chinese sensation Guan Tianlang has made another weekend on the PGA TOUR.
Guan carded a 3-under 69 in the second round of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans and sits at 3 under for the tournament. He was tied for 44th place when he finished with the afternoon groups still on the course and finished the day in a tie for 57th.
"I think I played a very good round today," Guan said, "and I made a lot of birdies and a couple of good up and downs. So I think I had a pretty good round, I think. I think I made the cut. ...
"Making the cut is one of my goals. I'm having fun these couple of days, and I hope to play my best and go a little further into the weekend."
Guan trails leader Lucas Glover by nine shots entering Saturday's third round. And while his chances of winning are slim, where he finishes seems of little importance to those golf fans who have taken a shine to him.
He appears to attract all ages, young and old, including his parents who were in his gallery Friday.
"I feel OK with them watching me,'' he said. "It makes it a little easier but it's still difficult to play on this course.''
Guan opened second-round play at even par, quickly moved to 1 under with a birdie on his first hole (No. 10), gave it back at No. 11, then sank a pivotal 17-foot for birdie at the 346-yard, par 4 16th.
He also posted birdies at Nos. 1 and 4, cracking par for the first time of his brief two-event career on the PGA TOUR. It also marks his lowest round in his first six rounds on TOUR, and he has not made worse than bogey on any single hole.
Friday's 69 was the same score shot by veterans Ernie Els and Justin Rose, among others. It's four strokes better than the 73 shot by Rickie Fowler, who at age 24 is among the closest players in the field nearest to Guan's age.
Morgan Hoffmann, who finished his second round about the same time as Guan did, said what the eighth-grader was doing "is unbelievable. You know, The Masters and then here, it's awesome. ...
"I hope he understands what he's doing, because everybody out here is following him."
Last year, Guan stayed in the New Orleans area for a month while working on his golf game. He said he was glad to see the big, supportive crowds.
"I'm not too surprised because I came here last year and I have some friends here," Guan said. "So I think I would play pretty good golf."
Two weeks ago, Guan made the cut as the youngest competitor Masters history en route to claiming Low Amateur honors.