Willett Takes over First at European Masters

England's Danny Willett fired a stellar 8-under 62 to rise into the top spot at the halfway point of the European Masters. The European Tour event is taking place at Crans Montana Golf Club in Switzerland.

The 27-year-old Willett, who made a run at the Claret Jug during last week's Open Championship at St. Andrews before finishing tied for sixth, carded nine birdies. The only blemish on his card was a bogey on the par-4 12th.

Willett heads into the weekend at 13-under 127, a stroke ahead of a pair of South Koreans, Y. E. Yang and Baek Seuk-hyun, who each carded 63s. The next-closest player at 9-under 131 is Swedish amateur Marcus Kinhult, who had a 66.

Yang, the surprise 2009 PGA champion who outdueled Tiger Woods for the Wanamaker Trophy, hasn't visited the winner's circle since the 2010 Volvo China Open. But Yang is in good position for another title.

"The conditions were ideal and my putting was good as well, so I'm very happy," the 43-year-old told the European Tour's website. "I managed to judge the ball distance better as the ball flies 10 percent further due to the altitude - it's beautiful, with the mountains and scenery."

A stroke behind Kinhult - who celebrated his 19th birthday Friday - are Sweden's Rikard Karlberg, Australians Richard Green and Marcus Fraser, defending champion David Lipsky from Los Angeles, and Frenchmen Grégory Havret and Raphaël Jacquelin.

After taking the 18-hole lead with a 63, Havret carded a 1-under 69 on Friday to drop into a tie for fifth at 132.

The projected 36-hole cut is 1-under 139. Among the players at that number is Spain's Sergio Garcia, who has carded rounds of 69 and 70.

For all the scores, visit http://www.europeantour.com/europeantour/season=2015/tournamentid=2015056/leaderboard/index.html?showLeaderboard=Y#J7vlm8CWLtjLd2EM.97.