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Jun 28, 2024 6:43 pm

Aaron Rai joins Akshay Bhatia atop Rocket Mortgage leaderboard

aaron rai

Aaron Rai of England birdied his last two holes to complete a 7-under 65 and tie Akshay Bhatia for the halfway lead at the Rocket Mortgage Classic on Friday at Detroit Golf Club.

Rai’s afternoon round brought him to 13-under 131 through two days, matching Bhatia, the 18-hole leader who shot a 67 earlier in the day.

The duo has a two-stroke advantage over four players at 11 under: Cameron Young (66 Friday), Taylor Montgomery (68), Troy Merritt (64) and Erik van Rooyen (64) of South Africa.

Bhatia followed his opening 64 with a slightly calmer, five-birdie round, but both Bhatia and Rai are bogey-free through 36 holes.

The 22-year-old Bhatia enters the weekend seeking his third win in less than 12 months. After his breakthrough victory came at the Barracuda Championship last July, he captured the Valero Texas Open in April.

As for Rai, the 29-year-old has two career wins on the DP World Tour, but none stateside. He has hit a resounding 34 of 36 greens in regulation through two days.

The projected cut line was 4 under par as players finished their rounds Friday afternoon. Miles Russell, the 15-year-old amateur and top-ranked junior in the world, won’t make the cut in his PGA Tour debut, but he shot a 2-under 70 Friday to improve on his first-round score by four strokes.

–Field Level Media

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