The Northern Irishman birdied four of his first five holes at Diamond Country Club, and responded to a bogey at the 17th with another gain at the next to reach seven under for the week with six holes left to play.
That saw him catch overnight leader George Coetzee, with the South African amongst the afternoon starters.
Also going well on the second morning were Scot Andrew Coltart, who reached the run in four under to also be seven under following an opening 69 and Spaniard José Manuel Lara.
Lara - 130th on The Race to Dubai and needing to climb into the top 115 over the next two months to keep his European Tour card - had two birdies and a bogey in his first ten holes.
Lara's compatriot Gonzalo Fernandez-Castaño was alone in fifth on six under having played his first 12 holes in two under par.
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