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Saturday, March 5, 2011

What Time Is It at the Honda Classic?

With all apologies to the Jukebox Robot, it's actually time to reassess who might win this tournament!

At the halfway point the cut was +6 and only 12 players are under par... and it's one of the most scrambled leaderboards we've seen all year!

Kyle Stanley sits atop the leaderboard at -6 after a 68-66 start. This is certainly unexpected, although he's 5 for 5 in cuts made this year.

Where did Rory Sabbatini come from? It's not like he hasn't played reasonably well, but that amazing 64 he shot Friday put him in 2nd place at -5.

Charl Schwartzel's at -3. He won the Joberg Open in Africa earlier this year, so he's probably not such a surprise.

I admit that I'm rooting for Tommy "Two Gloves" Gainey. I don't think anybody expected him to be in contention again so soon but there he is at -2, T4 with Ricky Barnes, Jerry Kelly, and Stuart Appleby. I'd really like to see Tommy pull a "Jhonny Vegas" and get a win this week.

World #2 Lee Westwood sits at -1 with a chance to retake #1 if he wins. If the weather gets bad as expected, I think you have to consider him a realistic contender. Others at this number include Matt Kuchar, Gary Woodland, Y.E. Yang, and 1st round leader Spencer Levin.

Beyond that, I don't know how many players still have a realistic chance to win. I don't want to rule out Luke Donald at +1, given how well he played in last week's conditions. But depending on how bad the weather turns -- and how much the leaders come back to the pack -- most of the players may have shot themselves completely out of the tournament.

So I guess, for the players left in the field at the Honda Classic, it's also time to buckle down for a rough ride. Charlie Rymer was right -- if you really enjoy watching the pros struggle like weekend players, you came to the right tournament!

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