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  • Open de France, Round Two

Poulter and Donald scrape inside the cutline

ESPN staff
July 5, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
Ian Poulter ended day two eight shots off the lead at the Open de France © Getty Images
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Open de France leaderboard

Ian Poulter and Luke Donald will have their work cut out if they are to challenge at the Open de France after scraping inside the cut line at Le Golf National.

The English pair, making their final preparations as they bid to win a maiden major at the Open Championship in a fortnight's time, both ended the day two-over par to ensure their places in the weekend by a single stroke.

But it is Fabrizio Zanotti who leads at the halfway point after firing a second successive 68 to reach six-under par in Paris.

Fog had forced a one-hour delay to the second day, before Anders Hansen fell away dramatically as he followed his first-round 66 with a 78.

Fellow Danes Thomas Bjorn and Soren Kjeldsen had better days, however, carded 69 and 68 respectively to reach five-under par, where they are joined by South Africa's Richard Sterne.

A British quartet makes up the group on four-under, including Northern Ireland's Graeme McDowell (69), Scot Stephen Gallagher (70) and Englishmen Simon Dyson and Graeme Storm (both 68).

"I'm playing this golf course the way it's supposed to be played - fairways and greens. Once you start hitting it off line it will punish you," said McDowell, who had missed five of his previous six cuts.

"I just have not got the putter revved up but I am well in touch and right where I need to be."

Poulter, whose level par round included four birdies and as many bogeys, wrote on Twitter: "Well that was a little frustrating, playing nicely not much going at the moment. Only eight behind on this course. Big weekend ahead."

Hansen's nightmare round featured seven bogeys and a double bogey at the second, and he ended day two level with Poulter and Donald - a shot ahead of American Ryder Cup star Matt Kuchar.

Defending champion Marcel Siem is among those headed home early. The German carded a respectable one-under par 70, but the damage was done with his opening day 78. 2011 champion Thomas Levet also missed the cut.

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