Bad weather shortens Ballantine's to 54 holes

JEJU ISLAND, South Korea (AP) — The fog-disrupted Ballantine's Championship has been shortened to 54 holes, organizers said Friday.

"It has become clear that the completion of 72 holes within the required time frame is not feasible," said a statement by tournament directors.

Thursday's first round was delayed for six hours by fog, with nearly a third of the field not starting their opening rounds.

"It's unfortunate, but we feel that it is the best thing for the Ballantine's Championship and all of the players who are playing in it," European Tour official John Paramor said, according to a transcript provided by the tournament's media center.

Marcus Fraser of Australia shot an opening 7-under 65 on Thursday to take a one-stroke lead in the tournament.

Fraser had a bogey-free round and leads second-place Mark Foster of England at the $2.9 million event at Pinx Golf Club sanctioned by the Asian Tour, European Tour and the Korea PGA.

Ted Oh of South Korea shot a 67 in near darkness to take a share of third place with Rick Kulacz of Australia and Welshman Jamie Donaldson, who were 5 under through 17 and 16 holes, respectively, when the first day's play ended.

Ernie Els of South Africa and American Anthony Kim both shot 68.

Y.E. Yang, returning for a tournament on his home island for the first time since winning the PGA championship last year, birdied the first hole before darkness halted play.