Goosen continues smooth return
Retief Goosen continued to impress on his return from a four-month injury lay-off as the Italian Open resumed in Turin on Friday.
Two-time US Open winner Goosen withdrew from the Players Championship at Sawgrass in May with a back injury, which turned out to be a stress fracture.
The 44-year-old admitted he had no idea where the ball was going to go ahead of his competitive return, revealing he lost four balls in a practice round on Tuesday.
But after exceeding his own expectations with an opening round of 70, the South African picked up shots at the 10th - his opening hole - and 14th this morning to improve to four under par.
That was just three shots off the lead held shared by Argentina's Ricardo Gonzalez, Belgium's Nicolas Colsaerts and Germany's Max Kieffer, who were all among the later starters.
Former Open champion David Duval was also climbing up the leaderboard after struggling to an opening 75 which left him battling to make the halfway cut.
Duval, who is now ranked 1,550th in the world, birdied the 10th, 12th and 14th to get back to level par, one shot outside the projected cut mark.
Goosen dropped his first shot of the day on the 18th to be out in 35, but bounced back immediately with his third birdie of the day on the first.
However, another bogey on the third dropped him back to three under par, four behind the leading trio who had still not been caught at the top of the leaderboard.
Duval remained level par after a birdie on the first was also cancelled out by a bogey on the third.
South African Hennie Otto was the first man to catch the leaders when he carded his seventh birdie of the day on the 14th, but after missing from seven feet for another on the next, he also failed to convert a par putt of similar distance on the 16th having missed the green with his tee shot.
That dropped him back to six under alongside England's Steve Benson, who had set the clubhouse target after adding a 70 to his opening 68.