Watson & Kuchar happy slapping

28 April 2018 05:41:23 EST

Bubba Watson and Matt Kuchar carded a best-of-the-day 5-under-par 67 in the foursomes to hit the halfway mark of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans tied seventh.

The Americans head into the weekend four shots back of the 36-hole leaders Michael Kim and Andrew Putnam who added a 69 to their first round 62 for 13-under 131.

If that unheralded pair took the scoring plaudits, Watson and Kuchar grabbed the headlines with a bizarre celebration which involved them slapping each other in the face when they made birdie, something they did seven times on Friday.

"Everybody has got something, some sort of handshake, some sort of fist bump, some sort of tap on the backside," said Kuchar.

"I figured this was a good opportunity for me to slap Bubba in the face. Everybody wants to do that, and I talked him into it."

Watson was happy to go along with the unusual suggestion.

"So we basically slap each other in the face," he said. "We're saying 'come on, do another one, get another one'. That's what we're trying to do. Trying to cheer us on and get us excited."

Above and beyond the face-hitting, they made a strong move by going lower in foursomes than they had done in Thursday's fourballs.

"Kind of hard to believe and kind of a bit of a sad," said Kuchar. "4-under par in best ball is not at all what we were looking for, but awfully nice to come out today with a proper round of golf. We played some awfully nice golf today.

"Bubba was playing some really good golf, putting me a lot of good positions, so I felt like I owed him some good tee shots. Standing on the tee, I was going, 'I don't want let him down here.' There is some added pressure for sure."

The Watson/Kuchar combination is 1000/1 to win the tournament outright. Kim and Putnam are 150/1 with Kevin Kisner and Scott Brown (currently second on 12-under) 150/1.

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