Irish off the pace in France

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Updated: July 2, 2011

The Irish are well off the pace as we head in the third round of the Alstom French Open with Paul McGinley and Gareth Maybin stand on level par 10 shots off the lead, with Michael Hoey and Peter Lawrie one and two over respectively.

Darren Clarke and Shane Lowry missed the cut however after they finished 4 and 5 over respectively.

England’s James Morrison is the leader heading into the third round after he shot a second successive 66 to move to 10 under.

The 26 year old suffers from Crohn’s disease and was a doubt heading into the tournament but he managed to make his way to Le Golf National and lies one ahead of Australian Richard Green at the half way point.

Martin Kaymer, needing a top 8 finish to reclaim his world number 3 spot, is 2 under after 36 holes however Bubba Watson and last year’s winner Miguel Angel Jimenez both crashed out of the competition.

Watson lashed out at the organisers of the tournament following his exit from his maiden European tour regular event, the American voicing his displeasure at the camera happy fan’s who had turned out to see their favourite golf stars. ‘On every tee it says no phones, no video cameras and on every tee there’s hundreds,’ said Watson.

‘It’s different – it’s not a normal tournament. There’s cameras, there’s phones, no security. I don’t know which holes to walk through – there’s no ropes.

‘I’m not saying it’s bad, it’s just something I’m not used to and not comfortable with. It’s very strange to me.’

Meanwhile with 442,000 euro in prize money and a place in the Open at stake all eyes will be on Morrison to see if the man who chose Golf over Cricket can claim his 2nd European tour win.

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