Dubai - Race to Dubai leader Rory McIlroy
achieved separation from main rival Danny Willett by two shots in the second
round of the European Tour season finale on Friday.
McIlroy, bidding to top the tour for the
third time in four years, carded consecutive 68s to be at 8-under-par 136,
three off Emiliano Grillo's clubhouse lead in the World Tour Championship.
On a day when most players went low,
McIlroy could only match his opening round, including five birdies, and one
bogey on the par-3 6th. He birdied only one of the four par-5s at Jumeirah Golf
Meanwhile, Willett, tied with McIlroy in
the first round, shot a 2-under 70. The Englishman started well with birdies on
Nos. 2-3, but bogeyed No 5, and No 16 immediately after a birdie on 15. He
needed to hole a 15-footer for par on the last and keep his hopes alive.
Grillo posted a bogey-free 8-under 64,
starting and finishing the day's best round with birdies for the Argentine to
reach 11 under overall.
American Patrick Reed was two behind after
five birdies in his last six holes to close with a 65.
Reed finished second to Sweden's Kristoffer
Broberg in the BMW Masters in Shanghai last weekend, and has four top-10
finishes in his last four starts.
At 9 under overall, Reed was one shot ahead
of Charl Schwartzel, who also made a bogey-free 65 with four birdies in the
last five holes.