Dubai - Spain's Alvaro Quiros was up to his old desert tricks again on Friday, firing a course record-equalling 64 to storm four shots clear of the field after the Dubai World Championship second round.
While Quiros was putting together his eight-under-par effort, Luke Donald was closing the gap on fellow Briton Rory McIlroy in their two-horse race to finish the season as European number one.
World number one Donald followed his opening 72 with a four-under 68 to close on 140, three behind McIlroy who dropped two strokes in the last two holes to return a 71.
U.S. PGA Tour money-list winner Donald needs to finish equal ninth here with no more than one other player to become the first player to land the orders of merit on both sides of the Atlantic.
At the top of the leaderboard, the fun-loving Quiros was doing his best to spoil the money-list party by once again showing how much he enjoyed golf in the Gulf.
The smiling 6-foot-3 Spaniard, winner of this year's Dubai Desert Classic and the 2010 Qatar Masters, put himself on track for a Middle East treble after snatching only the second eagle of the week at the par-five 18th.
Quiros did not drop a stroke all day and picked up birdies at the second, fourth, eighth, 11th, 14th and 16th to equal the Greg Norman-designed Earth course record held by Swede Peter Hanson and British pair Lee Westwood and Ross Fisher.
Hanson, the overnight leader, added a 72 to his opening 64 to take second place on 136, one ahead of McIlroy and his fellow Briton Robert Rock (69) in the European Tour's season-ending event
Alvaro Quiros (Spain) 68 64 132
(Sweden) 64 72 136
Robert Rock (Britain) 68 69 137
Rory McIlroy (Britain) 66 71 138 Paul Casey (Britain) 72 66
Paul Lawrie (Britain) 65 73 139 Louis Oosthuizen (South Africa) 72 67
Pablo Larrazabal (Spain) 71 68
Francesco Molinari (Italy) 71 68
Shane Lowry (Ireland) 69 70
Jaco Van Zyl (South Africa) 69 70 140 Luke Donald (Britain) 72 68
Johan Edfors (Sweden) 72 68
Charl Schwartzel (South Africa) 69 71
Sergio Garcia (Spain) 67 73 141 Fredrik Andersson Hed (Sweden) 75 66
Raphael Jacquelin (France) 74 67
Matteo Manassero (Italy) 73 68
Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (Spain) 70 71
David Lynn (Britain) 69 72
David Horsey (Britain) 69 72 142 Lee Westwood (Britain) 73 69
Ian Poulter (Britain) 73 69
Rafael Cabrera-Bello (Spain) 72 70
Graeme McDowell (Britain) 71 71
Alexander Noren (Sweden) 70 72
Thomas Aiken (South Africa) 69 73
Ross Fisher (Britain) 68 74