Updated: Saturday, 30 August 2014 05:27 | By Agence France-Presse

Otto moves into Italian lead as Gallacher battles

Hennie Otto took a three-shot lead in the Italian Open in Turin following Friday's second round.


Otto moves into Italian lead as Gallacher battles

South African Hennie Otto tees off to the 1st hole during the last day of the Portugal Masters golf tounament at Victoria Golf Course in Vilamoura on October 13, 2013 - by Patricia de Melo Moreira

The 38-year-old South African carded an incredible 10-under-par 62 to surge into the lead having started the day a shot behind Italian Francesco Molinari and Bernd Wiesberger of Austria.

But following a miserable opening round 72, Scotland's Stephen Gallacher gave his Ryder Cup chances a boost with a 65.

He needs to finish in the top two in order to overtake Graeme McDowell and earn an automatic spot on the European team at Gleneagles next month.

Having begun the day six shots off that position, he clawed back a shot on second-placed Wiesberger.

But before he even started his round he admitted the leader board -- on which Otto and Wiesberger had already come home -- made depressing reading.

The South African was 15 under par with Wiesberger at 12-under and Gallacher sitting on par.

"When you tee it up 15 and 12 behind, you know you're going to have to be more aggressive and make some birdies so I was delighted to shoot 65 with a double bogey in the end," said Gallacher, who is now joint ninth.

"I don't think I could say on air what I was thinking when I saw the leaderboard at lunch. It was a strange feeling. 

"I was looking at the guy who was second to be honest to try and catch him up a bit and a couple more 65s at the weekend and we will see what happens.

"There are two more rounds and a lot can happen in golf. Just to be in with a shout on Sunday is all you can ask."

Otto came close to making history with the first sub-60 round on the European Tour but needing to birdie the last three holes, a bogey on 17 scuppered that chance.

Even so, he is well placed to repeat his Italian Open victory from 2008 in Milan.

"It's always special to shoot a 62 but a 59 never even crossed my mind," said Otto.

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