Marcel Siem followed his brilliant opening 64 with a four under 68 to maintain his advantage during the second round of the Trophée Hassan II.
The 32 year old German, who requires a win to stand any chance of climbing into the Official World Golf Ranking’s top 50 and earn a debut Masters Tournament appearance next month, had seven birdies and three bogeys as he moved to 12 under par at Golf du Palais Royal.
“I think it should have been better than it was to be honest,” said Siem, who raced to 12 under with four birdies in his first eight holes but failed to make further progress.
“The bogeys on four and seven were a bit weird because I was in the middle of the fairway there.
“But otherwise, this course is always tricky and I should accept the 68 because it’s always nice to go under par after such a low round the day before because that can be quite difficult to follow up on sometimes.”
On his chances of earning a last-minute ticket to the year’s first Major Siem added: “I am trying my best. It is a tournament I have always wanted to play and if I can keep calm and play the way that I have been for the first two days here then I have a chance.
“I actually hope the wind blows a little bit more because I actually enjoy the challenge of playing into the wind and it would also keep the guys behind me away from me because if there is no wind out there then people can go very low around this course.”
The Open de France champion’s nearest clubhouse challenger after the morning session was Finn Mikko Ilonen, who had seven birdies, an eagle, a bogey and a double bogey seven in an eventful 66 which left him three back.
England’s 2011 winner David Horsey, who carded an impressive 68 in the windiest of the conditions yesterday, moved into third on seven under when he birdied three of his first four holes.
Horsey also birdied the fifth, but double bogeyed the short eighth to turn in 34.
However, he started for home in fine fashion with birdies from 12 and 15 feet at the tenth and 11th to reach eight under.