sport

Spanish theme in Morocco

Two Spaniards and an Englishman named after one continued to set the pace in the second round of the Hassan Trophy in Morocco on Friday.

Alejandro Canizares held a one-shot lead over Seve Benson after a stunning opening 62 at Golf du Palais Royal in Agadir, Canizares carding 11 birdies and one bogey despite playing in the windier afternoon conditions.

And although Benson, who was named after the late five-time major winner Seve Ballesteros, briefly took over the lead this morning as he followed on from his flawless 63, Canizares hit back to reclaim the lead.

Birdies at the fourth and fifth had taken Benson to 11 under par, one ahead of Canizares who had birdied the first but dropped a shot on the second.

However, Benson then dropped his first shot of the week on the eighth and although he responded with a birdie on the 12th, former Russian Open winner Canizares had started to recover his putting touch.

After reaching the turn in 36, Canizares birdied four of his next five holes, the only blemish coming as the world number 141 three-putted the 13th from long range.

At 13 under par, Canizares led by two from fellow Spaniard Rafael Cabrera-Bello and Benson, Cabrera-Bello putting together the round of the day to impress playing partner and Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley.

Cabrera-Bello had started from the 10th with an eagle and followed that with birdies on the 13th, 14th, 15th and 18th to be out in just 30 strokes, before picking up another shot on the third.