Morikawa takes two-shot lead in Hawaii

Winless last year for the first time in his young career, Collin Morikawa is playing as though he wants to put that behind him quickly.

Two-time major winner Morikawa was dialed in with his irons early and took advantage of some of the scoring holes late for a second round of seven-under 66 that gave him a two-shot lead in the PGA Tour's Tournament of Champions in Hawaii on Friday.

He was at 16-under 130 and without a bogey over two rounds on the Plantation Course at Kapalua.

World No.2 Scottie Scheffler ran off nine birdies in his round of 66, leaving tied second with Kapalua newcomer J.J. Spaun (68).

Master champion Scheffler can return to No.1 in the world this week with a two-way tie for third or better, with top-ranked Rory McIlroy choosing to sit out this week.

Jordan Spieth had two eagles - one a 7-iron that came inches away from an albatross on the par-5 fifth hole - in his 66 to be three shots behind Morikawa.

The lone Australian, Adam Scott improved with a five-under 68 to be tied 18th at eight under, having birdied four of the last six holes.

Morikawa ordinarily wouldn't be at Kapalua for the winners-only start to the year. But in this new year of trying to bring together the top players more often, the tour expanded the field from exclusively winners in 2022 to include those who reached the 30-man FedEx Cup finale at East Lake.

On a gorgeous Friday afternoon on Maui with a little more wind, he did most of his damage early. It started with a 20-foot birdie putt on the opening hole, followed by short irons to 3 feet and 8 feet.

From there, everyone else did well to keep pace.

Morikawa had a chance to tie the 36-hole scoring record that 2022 champion Cameron Smith set last year at 17-under 129.

He was just off the front of the 18th green when he muffed his chip and saw it run out to only 30 feet, and his long birdie putt banged off the lip.

Scheffler was introduced on the first tee with a mention of all four of his wins last year, from the Phoenix Open to the Masters. Next up was Fitzpatrick, who beat Scheffler by one shot at Brookline. He was introduced as the US Open champion.

"You don't have that one," Fitzpatrick said as they laughed.

Scoring remained low enough that only two players were over par - Billy Horschel (71) and Chad Ramey (76) were one over.