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Westwood's 64 puts him clear in Sweden

ESPN staff
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Lee Westwood hit the front early in Sweden © Getty Images
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Lee Westwood continued his preparations for next week's US Open with a glittering round of 64 to claim the clubhouse lead at the Nordea Masters on Thursday.

Westwood, who carded a steady if unspectacular 68 on Wednesday, rushed to the turn in his second round at five-under par and never looked back, adding a further three birdies and six pars coming home to finish eight-under for the day and 12-under for the tournament.

That was enough to put him three-shots clear of early rival Peter Hanson, who followed Wednesday's five-under par 67 with a 68 to sit nine-under after 36 holes.

"I played well, better than yesterday," Westwood said. "I probably deserved a 64. Golf courses take a little getting used to, I'm still learning the lines off the tee and the breaks of the greens but I'm delighted.

"It's nice to come and play well and put on a bit of a show - and hopefully have a chance over the weekend."

Starting his round on the 10th, Westwood opened with two steady pars before picking up birdies at the two successive par-fives to pick up some steam. A par at the next two - missing another opportunity at a third par-five - threatened to slow the world No. 3's progress, but he then reeled off three successive birdies to reach nine-under for the tournament and hit the front.

The front nine was less spectacular, but Westwood avoided mistakes and picked up three further birdies to open up some breathing space between himself and the rest of the field.

Elsewhere, Pelle Edberg and Roope Kakke are both six-under, with Jeev Milkha Singh a shot further back from them and defending champion Alex Noren clawing his way to four-under thanks to a second round 66.

Sergio Garcia finished three under for the day to finish on six under par alongside Ross Fisher and Michael Hoey, who birdied the last to join the Spaniard and Englishman after the first two rounds.

A double-bogey at the 17th undid Rafael Cabrera-Bello's fine work on the back nine, leaving the Spaniard four under at Bro Hof Slott Golf Club.

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