Thursday, 28 January 2016
Paul Lawrie  (Getty Images)
Paul Lawrie (Getty Images)

Paul Lawrie's mission to become the first man to win the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters three times was well on course on Thursday as he reached the turn in 33 to take a one-shot lead early in the second round.

The winner of 1999 and 2012 had spoken of how comfortable he was tackling the notorious winds around Doha Golf Club after an opening 67 on Wednesday, and he certainly looked right at home as he moved to eight under.

The Scot birdied the tenth, his first, and 12th to get into a share of the lead but he dropped a shot on the 15th. He regained it on the driveable 16th and, when another birdie followed on the 18th, he held a one-shot lead over Sergio Garcia, Grégory Bourdy and afternoon starters Pablo Larrazábal and Louis Oosthuizen.

Bourdy made history in his second round as he recorded the first ever hole-in-one at the eighth hole.

The Frenchman had made seven straight pars in the morning as he stood on the tee at the eighth but his ace helped him turn in 34. He gave a shot back on the tenth but quickly regained it on the 11th.

Garcia was playing in his first tournament of 2016 and was left to rue missed chances in recording an opening round of 70.

The 2014 champion soon put that right on Thursday, birdieing the tenth before two further gains on the 14th and 15th were followed by an eagle on the 16th to take him five under for his round through eight holes.

Defending champion Branden Grace also had an eagle on the 16th to add to birdies on the tenth and 14th as he moved into the group at six under.

Thomas Bjørn, Lee Slattery and Alex Noren were then three under for the day in that group alongside Brett Rumford, who was two under, Bjørn Åkesson and late starter Nicolas Colsaerts.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1GRACE, BrandenRSA18-14
T2CABRERA-BELLO, RafaESP18-12
T2OLESEN, ThorbjørnDEN18-12
T4DREDGE, BradleyWAL18-11
T4JOHNSTON, AndrewENG18-11
T4SLATTERY, LeeENG18-11

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