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Friday, 09 November 2012
Chapchai Nirat   (Getty Images)
Chapchai Nirat (Getty Images)
Former monk Chapchai Nirat kept his composure to take a share of the lead after two days of the Barclays Singapore Open.

With further lightning delays preventing the completion of the second round, Thailand’s Nirat reached six under par at Sentosa GC to sit alongside England’s Simon Dyson at the top of the leaderboard; although there will be an instant change to that when play resumes as Dyson failed to par the 474 yard fifth - his 14th - just before the siren sounded and was left with a short putt for bogey.

The 29 year old, whose only European Tour title came back in 2007, birdied two of the last three holes of his first round to complete a 65 and move ahead of overnight leader Thomas Björn – the Dane amongst those not to hit a shot all day on Friday.

Nirat might even have eagled the par five last, but his two-putt birdie, followed by a level par front nine of his second round, were enough to keep him in a share of the lead.

One of Nirat’s three Asian Tour titles came with a record 32 under par total, but the World Number 631 admits struggles with a volatile temperament in the past have held him back – with regular visits to his local temple having helped him to adopt a calmer disposition. 

He said: “I used to be very hot-tempered and got frustrated easily, especially at a young age. So my parents sent me to the monastery, and I became a monk for a while. My temper is better now, but I still try to go back to the monastery once in a while.”

Dyson was four under par through 13 holes of his second round, with Björn joined by Italians Francesco Molinari and Matteo Manassero on five under par.

World Number One and Race to Dubai leader Rory McIlroy advanced to one under par thanks to a birdie at the 480 yard third during a 15-minute resumption between storms in the afternoon, hitting a superb iron to three feet.

It was hoped to get the tournament under way again at 5.30pm, but instead play was called off for the day.

Tournament Director Jose Maria Zamora said: “At present, our aim is still to complete 72 holes, weather permitting. We hope to finish the second round at approximately 3.15pm tomorrow, at which time there will be a re-draw for round three, which will not start before 4pm. 

“The third and fourth rounds would then be played with the same draw, which would allow us to finish at approximately 5.15pm on Sunday, provided there are no further delays. However, if we do suffer more delays we would then decide, in consultation with the sponsor and promoter, whether to reduce the tournament to 54 holes or complete the fourth round on Monday.”


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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1MANASSERO, MatteoITA18-13
2OOSTHUIZEN, LouisRSA18-13
3MCILROY, RoryNIR18-10
4BJÖRN, ThomasDEN18-9
T5SCOTT, AdamAUS18-8
T5MOLINARI, FrancescoITA18-8
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