Nordea Masters 2017: Jamie Donaldson Passes Renato Paratore After Friday Action

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistJune 2, 2017

BARSEBACKSHAMN, SWEDEN - JUNE 02:  Jamie Donaldson of Wales in action during the second round of The Nordea Masters at Barseback Golf & Country Club on June 2, 2017 in Barsebackshamn, Sweden.  (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

Jamie Donaldson claimed the lead at the 2017 Nordea Masters on Friday in Sweden, playing a round of four-under 69 to pass Renato Paratore on the leaderboard.

The Italian sits two shots behind the new leader, while Graeme Storm, Max Orrin and Benjamin Hebert are tied for a share of third. Here's a look at the leaderboard, via the European Tour's official Twitter account:


Donaldson dropped his first shot of the tournament―a bogey on the 15th―but otherwise continued his efficient play, landing five birdies for a second straight day of four-under golf.

The Welshman once again impressed with his excellent approach game and made no mistakes with his putter. The European Tour shared footage of this beautiful shot:

The 41-year-old is a fixture on the European Tour but hasn't won an event since 2014, when he beat compatriot Bradley Dredge to the D+D Real Czech Masters title. A good run in Sweden would help him greatly in the Race to Dubai.

Storm was among the early standouts, taking a share of the lead before Donaldson passed him later on Friday. The European Tour shared some of the numbers behind his round:

After Thursday's disappointing effort―he hit three straight bogeys and finished the day on par―Storm limited his mistakes to just two bogeys, and he made up for those with fantastic work from the tee.

Paratore finished the day just one under, courtesy of a solid run on the front nine, and thanks to his excellent showing on Thursday, he remains one of the top contenders for the title.

He sits just two shots behind Donaldson, and his ability to drive the ball means he'll remain one to keep an eye on. The European Tour gave fans a look at his picture-perfect swing:

Further down the leaderboard, the likes of Chris Wood and Dredge are in a solid position to challenge for a high finish, while local favourite Alex Noren has a lot of work to do.