x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Jake Shepherd leads the pack in Mena Tour

The Englishman has a five-shot advantage with the tournament ending at Tower Links Golf Club on Wednesday.

England's Jake Shepherd produced a second successive round of 67 on Tuesday to take a commanding lead at the Ras Al Khaimah Classic.

The 21 year old now has a five-shot advantage at the top of the leader board at the second Mena Tour event, which ends on Wednesday at the Tower Links Golf Club.

Shepherd's back nine boasted seven birdies, including the last five holes, to take him to 10-under for his two rounds.

"It was a tough task on the front nine, but my approach shots started working well later in the day and I went a bit wild on the back nine," said Shepherd, who was encouraged to compete in the event by his friend Zane Scotland, the winner of last week's Abu Dhabi Golf Citizen Open.

"I hit most of my approaches to within 10 yards of the pin, and except for a long 25-yard putt [on the 17th]; I don't think I had any trouble in holing a birdie putt.

"I think he [Zane] will be very pleased with my work and so will my father. This is the very first time that I am away from home without my father. He will be really proud of my achievement because I don't think ever in my golfing career I have had five birdies in a row,"

Yasin Ali is five shots behind after a 67 put him to five-under for the tournament alongside Peter Richardson and Ahmed-Read Rhazali. The cut was made at 11 over par, with 50 players making it into today's final round.

ncameron@thenational.ae

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