Crans-Montana - Rory McIlroy continued his excellent recent form by firing a
seven-under-par 63 in the second round of the European Masters on Friday
to move one shot behind halfway leader Gavin Green in Switzerland.
The four-time major champion, who won the PGA Tour's Tour
Championship and the $15 million FedEx Cup prize last weekend, made
three bogeys in his first 12 holes, but stormed home with a four-hole
run of three birdies and an eagle.
"Even if I do make a bogey, I'm having a good time here and enjoying myself," the world No 2 told Sky Sports.
"That's probably why I finished like I did there despite dropping three shots in my opening 12 holes."
The Northern Irishman came agonisingly close to lifting his maiden
European Tour title at Crans-Montana as a 19-year-old in 2008, but
missed a short par putt for victory before losing to unheralded
Frenchman Jeff Lucquin in a playoff.
McIlroy is tied with four other players on 10-under overall just behind Green on a strong leaderboard.
"I'm excited. It's good, I've given myself another chance to win," said McIlroy.
"It would have been easy for me to take my foot off the gas after
last week. I've given myself a good chance to win this tournament, which
I've come close to winning before."
Malaysian Green followed up his opening-round 65 with a 64 on Friday to boost his hopes of a first European Tour success.
The world No 209 sits just one stroke ahead of a group of five -
McIlroy, Tommy Fleetwood, Andres Romero, Matthias Schwab and Wade
The 13th-ranked Fleetwood also played the Tour Championship at East
Lake last week, and has recorded successive 65s at Crans-Montana.
The popular Englishman was bogey-free for his second round, rolling in an eagle on the par-five 15th.
Leading second-round scores from the European Tour's European Masters
in Crans-Montana, Switzerland, on Friday (par 70/GBR & IRL unless
129 - Gavin Green (MAL) 65-64
130 - Andres Romero (ARG) 69-61, Wade Ormsby (AUS) 66-64, Tommy Fleetwood 65-65, Matthias Schwab (AUT) 63-67, Rory McIlroy 67-63
132 - Hideto Tanihara (JPN) 66-66, Lorenzo Gagli (ITA) 64-68
133 - Renato Paratore (ITA) 67-66, Adri Arnaus (ESP) 66-67, Miguel Angel Jimenez (ESP) 67-66
134 - Lucas Bjerregaard (DEN) 66-68, Sergio Garcia (ESP) 66-68, Erik
van Rooyen (RSA) 65-69, Mikko Korhonen (FIN) 64-70, Christiaan
Bezuidenhout (RSA) 67-67, Thomas Pieters (BEL) 67-67, Sebastian
Soderberg (SWE) 64-70, James Morrison 67-67