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Rahm up by 2 after 5-under 66

Jon Rahm  (Marvin Gavin/The Sun Chronicle via AP)

Jon Rahm (Marvin Gavin/The Sun Chronicle via AP)

NORTON, United States (AFP) – Jon Rahm fired a five-under 66 Saturday to take a two-shot lead at the Dell Championship as world number two Jordan Spieth and former US Open winner Justin Rose charged up the leaderboard.

PGA Tour newcomer Rahm, who is ranked fifth in the world, shot an opening round 67 for a total of nine-under 133 at the halfway stage of the second event of the 2017 PGA Tour playoffs.

Canada’s Adam Hadwin (65), Englishman Paul Casey (65) and Americans Kyle Stanley (68) and Kevin Streelman (65) are tied for second at seven under at the TPC Boston course.

Phil Mickelson (67) is in a group of four tied for sixth at six-under 136, one shot ahead of Spieth and Rose, who both rebounded from one-over 72s in the first round to shoot 65s on Saturday.

Both of Rahm’s mistakes came on his front nine which he began on the 10th tee. After parring his first two holes he made bogey on the par-four 12th.

The 22-year-old Spaniard had a double bogey on the par-three 16th but answered it two holes later with an eagle on 18. His 200 foot approach set him up nicely for a 12-foot putt that curled right to left into the hole.

‘‘It felt like very different – that front nine and back nine,’’ Rahm said. ‘‘I played a nearly perfect back nine. Felt like I didn’t miss a shot.

‘‘But that front nine is the one that probably looked worse than what it felt. It felt like I was making great swings. We misjudged the wind a couple times or we got a couple gusts and ended up missing greens.’’

Dustin Johnson, who won last week and took a one stroke lead into the second round, cooled off Saturday with a one-over 72 that included two double bogeys on the back nine.

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