Taiwan’s Yeh Wei-Tze gave himself the ideal opportunity to claim his second title on The European Tour International Schedule when he moved into the lead at the halfway stage of the Omega Hong Kong Open at the Hong Kong Golf Club.
The 28 year old, whose maiden victory came in the 2000 Benson and Hedges Malaysian Open, carded a superb second round 63 for a 13 under par total of 129, one shot clear of Myanmar golfer Zaw Moe, with six players in a tie for third on 131, Simon Dyson, Anders Forsbrand, Mark Foster, Paul McGinley, Carl Pettersson and Adam Scott.
But the day belonged to Yeh, an eventuality which looked unlikely when he got his second round off to the untidiest of starts with a double bogey six at the 468 yards first hole.
Undaunted however, the fisherman’s son cast his net wide in search of birdies and returned an impressive haul, picking up three in a row from the second as well as at the eighth to be out in respectable figures of 33.
If his front nine scoring had been satisfactory, his back nine card was sensational, recovering from the loss of a shot at the 11th with an eagle three at the 529 yards 12th and five birdies in the next six holes to be home in 30.
“I got really angry when I double bogeyed my first hole with a three putt,” said Yeh. “It made me play harder and it was good to bounce straight back with three successive birdies. That got me going and on the back nine, I played really well.”
Second placed Moe continued his impressive week at the Hong Kong Golf Club with an excellent second round 64 for a 12 under par total of 130.
The big hitting 34 year old, who is based in Singapore but plays most of his golf in Japan, started his second round at the tenth hole and birdies at the 11th, 12th, 17th, third, fourth, sixth and ninth saw him maintain his record of not having dropped a shot in two days.
Of the group of players in third, one of the happiest was Irishman Paul McGinley who harvested a rich bounty on the golf course’s par fives for a 66 to help keep him in contention for the 128,848 euro (£80,170) first prize.
"I'm hitting them in two and it makes a huge difference,” said the 34 year old Dubliner. “That's the reason, I'm playing steady, nothing special but the par fives are helping me out. I'm very surprised, particularly with the greens, because I putted atrociously last week in Japan on similar greens so maybe I've learnt something last week.
"The scoring is going to be really hot on the weekend and I think the winning score is going to be better than 20 under par. I don't know if I can find the extra gears to keep in contention but if you asked me at the start of the week, would I be 11 under after two rounds I would have said no. If I can play the par fives as well as I have been, I should be able to compete.”
Alongside, Adam Scott had led after his first round 64 but was still satisfied to be still in contention after an indifferent round by his standards, a four under par 67.
"I'm pretty happy. I didn't play very well today so it was good to get out of it with that," said the 21-year-old, the winner of the Alfred Dunhill Championship on The European Tour in January.
"The scoring's going to be really good around here so I've got to hang in there and try to get back to playing well like I did yesterday. I missed a lot of greens and scrambled really well to only drop one shot."
Another player pleased to be in a challenging position was England’s Mark Foster, who came onto The European Tour on a high after topping the 2001 Challenge Tour rankings but who returned to earth with a bump last week when he missed the cut in the BMW Asian Open in Taiwan
"Last week robbed me of a bit of confidence but a couple of good chats over the phone got my brain back in gear," revealed the 26-year-old from Worksop, who followed his first round 66 with a second round 65.
"I got down on myself but it was wrong to let two rounds ruin a great year. I've got some good people at home, my parents, friends and manager and they put me back on track. After some good advice, I worked hard over the weekend in Hong Kong and I’ve got the rewards."
Making up the third place logjam, Simon Dyson, Anders Forsbrand and Carl Pettersson all shone with respective 64s.
Pettersson is one of the most in-form players competing this week after finishing fourth in Taiwan and demonstrated why with six birdies on his front nine, the back nine of the composite course at Hong Kong Golf Club.
"I started from the tenth and played very well," said the Swede, who was joint leader going into the final round in Taiwan before being overtaken by compatriot Jarmo Sandelin. "I played solid on the back nine as well but there seemed to be a goalkeeper in the hole."