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June 4 — With three early birdies, New England golfer Tim Petrovic was quickly climbing the Memorial Tournament leaderboard at Jack Nicklaus’ Muirfield Village Golf Club.
Petrovic was not alone in taking advantage of quick greens and perfect weather conditions during the second round of the Memorial. Thursday’s co-leader Rickie Fowler picked up where he left off in the first round, firing an eagle-3 on the par-5 15th hole to go with eight pars early Friday.
Fowler, who was in sole possession of first place at 9-under through 10 holes, started his round on the 10th tee, as did Tiger Woods.
Going low. Petrovic continued his strong recent play, with three birdies through 10 holes. At 6-under for the tourney, Petrovic had played his way into a tie for fourth place with Woods’ playing partner, Steve Stricker. Stricker was also 3-under for the day, through eight holes.
Another golfer with stellar a round early Friday was Camilo Villegas, who had the low round of the day, going 5-under through nine holes and climbing back to even-par for the tourney. The projected cut line was at 1-over.
Back on track? Woods, who struggled mightily with his game during Thursday’s first round, seemed to have found his rhythm. Most disappointing to the world’s number one was his inability to birdie the par-5s on Thursday.
“I played the par-5s terrible today,” Woods told reporters following his opening-round 72. “I played them even par. Can’t play those par-5s even par. You’ve got to take care of the par-5s.”
With a birdie on the par-5 11th, Woods was on his way to taking care of the nettlesome long holes, until he made a ho-hum par on the 15th.
“All the guys that are up there on the board, look at their scorecard, what they did on the par 5s,” Woods continued. “They’re all about 3-under par on the par 5s. That’s the biggest difference out there.”
Get out the bikini wax. About those Muirfield greens? Despite the downpours Wednesday and Thursday, the putting surfaces were firm and quick. Which, of course, led Golf Channel analyst Gary McCord to chime in with his most recent description of the greens, that stimped out at 15.
“Just shy of the speed of linoleum,” McCord quipped Thursday.
McCord, of course, gained notoriety and the scorn of Tom Watson many years ago for blaspheming the greens at Augusta National Golf Club when he said they were as slick as bikini wax.
Phil Mickelson, still hoping to dethrone Woods from his spot atop the world golf rankings, will tee off this afternoon, when thunderstorms may once again torment the golf course.

WHAT'S YOUR REACTION?