sport

Lundberg takes control

Mikael Lundberg made the most of ideal conditions to boost his chances of a first European Tour victory in six years in the Lyoness Open.

Lundberg carded an opening 67 at Diamond Country Club to share the overnight lead, but wasted little time in moving clear of the field when play resumed on Friday.

The 40-year-old from Helsingborg, whose previous wins came in the Russian Open in 2005 and 2008, parred the first two holes but then birdied the next four in succession to move to nine under par, four shots ahead of Richard Finch and Lee Slattery.

England's Adam Gee had shared the overnight lead with Lundberg but was a shot further back on four under after a rollercoaster front nine containing just two pars.

Gee, whose last appearance in the event in 2012 saw him retire after a first round of 81, had birdied the first, third and fourth, but dropped shots at the second, fifth, eighth and ninth to reach the turn in 37.

Defending champion Joost Luiten was another shot back on three under, the Ryder Cup hopeful starting on the back nine and picking up shots on the 14th and 15th before another birdie on the par-five first.

Lundberg, who failed to record a single top 10 finish last season and had to regain his card for the third successive year at the qualifying school, dropped his first shot of the day after a clumsy chip on the eighth.

And although he saved par after missing the green on the 10th, his lead was down to two shots as playing partner Slattery holed from 15 feet for birdie on the same hole.

Korea's Sihwan Kim joined Slattery on six under thanks to his sixth birdie of the day on the seventh, while Luiten was five under after picking up shots on the fourth and fifth.