The Open 2011: Tom Lewis finds the going tougher at Open

Tom Lewis
Lewis, fortunate not to go out of bounds, plays off the gravel path at the 18th

English amateur Tom Lewis found the going a little tougher on day two of the Open but remained in contention for the Claret Jug.

The 20-year-old, joint leader at Sandwich after an opening 65, shot a four-over-par 74 to drop to one under.

One of his five bogeys came after congratulating playing partner Tom Watson on a hole-in-one at the sixth.

"It will take me a while to get over that score but I'm still in the red so it's not too bad," Lewis told the BBC.

"It was very different and with the sun out expectations were risen. I am disappointed to shoot four over and I struggled around the greens.

"If you asked me two days ago I'd have taken one under after round two but now it doesn't feel so good. Four over is not great."

Lewis missed a good chance to take the outright lead after squandering a birdie opportunity at the third and his disappointment was compounded by a bogey at the following hole.

After dropping another shot at the sixth, he saved par at 10 and 11 with two fine putts before slipping up again at the 12th.

But the rising star from Welwyn Garden City carded his lone birdie at the 13th and battled on to remain well placed on the leaderboard.

His by an amateur in the Open's 140-year history and despite a brilliant chip to the green from the gravel at the 18th, he had to settle with two bogeys to complete his round. end,

However, playing his opening 36 holes with Tom Watson - the player he is named after - proved an inspiration.

After witnessing the 61-year-old fire an incredible hole-in-one at the sixth hole, Lewis added: "Tom's hole-in-one was excellent and the way the crowd cheered was like nothing I had heard before. It was an honour to play with him."

The American, who only two years ago had a putt for a record-equalling sixth Open title at Turnberry and become the oldest major winner by 11 years, paid a glowing tribute to his playing partner.

"He played a wonderful round yesterday and today, well it's the game of golf," said Watson, who carded a 70 to finish the second day on two over.

"He played some wayward shots and you get punished for that. I said to him 'the game averages out. You play good and bad but the main thing is where you are after four rounds'.

"When you shoot 65 you can afford to back up a little bit. He's still in this tournament."

Regarding the 15th ace of his career, Watson said: "You can't see it go in. It was a slam dunk but if it missed the flag it would've been 30 feet by. They're all lucky when they go in - but that's what I was aiming at."