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Friday, 19 March 2010
UBS Hong Kong Open - Round Three  (Getty Images)
UBS Hong Kong Open - Round Three (Getty Images)

UBS Hong Kong Open champion Lin Wen-tang geared up for next week's title defence by taking a two shot lead midway through the second round at the World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions in Shanghai on Friday.

Chinese Taipei's Lin picked up four shots over his opening nine holes to improve to ten under par ahead of next week's return to Fanling, the scene of his maiden win on The European Tour after defeating Rory McIlroy and Francesco Molinari in a thrilling play off.

American Ryan Moore remained second after improving to eight under par at the turn alongside Commercialbank Qatar Masters presented by Dolphin Energy champion Alvaro Quiros and overnight leader Nick Watney.

Lin, who won last month's Mercuries Taiwan Masters on the Asian Tour, stormed to the turn on the back nine at Sheshan International Golf Club with three consecutive birdies to post an impressive 31.

Moore's cause was helped by an eagle at the ninth after also beginning on the back nine, while Watney remained level par through 10 after cancelling out a double bogey in the middle of his front nine following his course record equalling eight under par 64 on Thursday.

Big hitting Spaniard Quiros has struggled for form since his thrilling win in Qatar at the start of the year with only a second place at The European Open to show for his efforts, but made his move in Shanghai courtesy of a second eagle of the week before reeling off three straight birdies to reach the turn in a flawless 31.

World Number One Tiger Woods remained in the hunt for a 17th WGC title after improving to six under alongside compatriots Anthony Kim and Pat Perez with a birdie at the ninth following a quiet start from the two time HSBC Champions runner up.

Ernie Els improved his chance of making an impact on the leaderboard with a hole in one at the sixth after judging an 198 yard six iron to perfection to move to four under overall through 11 after earlier shipping a triple bogey at the previous par three.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1MICKELSON, PhilUSA18-17
2ELS, ErnieRSA18-16
3MOORE, RyanUSA18-15
4MCILROY, RoryNIR18-14
5WATNEY, NickUSA18-13
T6KAYMER, MartinGER18-12
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