BAE races to the front

Seon Woo Bae vaulted herself into contention at the New Zealand Women's Open with a stunning second round of 64 in Christchurch.

The Korean, who managed only a 74 on the opening round, fired nine birdies with just the one bogey to sign for the best round of the day, three shots better than anyone else could manage.

With none of the leading group able to beat 68, Bae was the big mover on the second day of competition.

Local favourite Lydia Ko, the world's number one amateur, was among those going round in 68, two better than she managed yesterday, with the 15-year-old's round highlighted by an eagle on the long 14th.

Ko and Bae are together on six under after two rounds, one shot better off than Italian Giulia Sergas.

Nikki Campbell, part of a three-way all-Australian tie overnight, is the only one of that trio still within touching distance of the lead as she sits fourth, a round of 71 today leaving her two shots off the pace.

Tamara Johns had four bogeys and one double bogey in a 75 that sent her tumbling down to a share of 22nd place, while Sarah Oh went one worse with five bogeys and a double bogey in a 76 that sent her down to a share of 28th.

Maria Hjorth and Pamela Pretswell were the players to register 67s, but they remain well down the standings - joint 22nd and 28th respectively - after disappointing opening rounds.

The cut after today's round account for some of the bigger names in the field.

Sweden's major winning pair Sophie Gustafson and Anna Nordqvist are both out, with rounds of 70 not enough to repair the damage of Gustafson's 78 and Nordqvist's 79 yesterday.

The tournament's top-ranked player, American Angela Stanford, also succumbed after a second successive 78.