Johansson hopes to be raining champion

Aug 3, 2007 - 4:34 PM Special to PA SportsTicker

MOSCOW (Ticker) -- Sweden's Per-Ulrik Johansson shot a 10-under-par 62 to race into a clear lead at the Russian Open on Friday before torrential rain for the second successive day brought an early finish.

The former Ryder Cup player took advantage of an early start to go top of the leaderboard on 13-under, six ahead of first-round leader Christian Nilsson and Ireland's Gary Murphy.

Johansson's compatriot, Nilsson, managed only six holes of his second round in level par, while Murphy was 2-under through five before the rains came.

Half of the 116-strong field will attempt to resume their second rounds at 7:30 a.m. local time on Saturday.

Johansson's round at Le Meridien Moscow County Club equalled his lowest on tour - his previous 62 coming in the 1991 Heineken Dutch Open - and while that was recognized as a course record, his latest effort was not due to the preferred lies in operation.

"That's OK, they can have the preferred lies. I've still got my 62 on the board," said the 40-year-old, who had six birdies on his front nine and four coming home. "It was certainly the best putting I have done in a long, long time. I have been putting well enough and I actually missed a couple from short range in the early part of my round, but I did make a lot of long ones.

"I didn't hit it all that great from the tee but when I missed it, I had a decent lie in the rough and I could get it on the green, so the way I was putting I pretty much had a chance for birdie on every hole."

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