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Hillier holds share of Provence lead

Hillier holds share of Provence lead

Daniel Hillier will bid to secure back-to-back European Challenge Tour victories after claiming a share of the 36-hole lead at the Hopps Open de Provence.


The Kiwi posted a six under par round of 66 to set the target at eight under par which was then matched by England’s Bailey Gill, playing in the penultimate game of the day, who birdied three of his last four to post a three under round of 69.

Hillier won the Swiss Challenge last week, his second Challenge Tour title, to move to 13th on the Road to Mallorca Rankings and he is in the mix again at Golf International de Pont Royal after gaining some momentum with a big par save on day one.

“I’m pretty happy with my work, especially today,” he said. “I got off to a bit of a shaky start first round, I actually made a good par save on 18 and I guess that gave me some momentum, I managed to come back strong in that first round and followed it up today with a good one.

“You really need to have control of the ball flight out there. My caddy and I have been working really well together, we’ve been picking the wind and getting some good numbers. I think I was five under on the par fives today which helps. If you put it in play on the par fives, birdie is in play and sometimes eagle.”

The duo lead by two ahead of South Africa’s Bryce Easton, Sweden’s Oscar Lengden and Robbie van West, of the Netherlands, and Hillier was pleased with his second round effort which he filed without a blemish.

“I’m feeling really good, I don’t think I’ve been doing anything special the last couple of days, I’ve just been playing really solid,” he said. “I’ve just been making sure, same as I said last week, just missing in the right spots and keeping the dropped shots off the card. It is going to be another grind this weekend, it is not going to come easy, but I’ll give it a good run.”

Six players share sixth place on five under par, including French duo Ugo Coussaud and Robin Sciot-Siegrist, who lead the home charge, Englishman Dan Brown, South Africa’s Deon Germishuys, Germany’s Max Rottluff and Joel Sjöholm from Sweden.

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