McIlroy and Noren lead in Kuala Lumpur

15/04/2011 13:18:25
Rory McIlroy  (Getty Images)
Rory McIlroy (Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy charged into a share of the second round lead alongside Alex Noren at the Maybank Malaysian Open - and the Northern Irishman is determined to complete the job this week.
The 21 year old led for 63 holes of last week's Masters Tournament, but came unstuck on the back nine at Augusta National as Charl Schwartzel walked away with the Green Jacket.

"I was in this position last week - leading going into the weekend - and I've led going into a few weekends this year and haven't quite got the win so hopefully this will be the week to get it," said the World Number Nine.

"If I can win then hopefully it will be the springboard to more victories this year."

McIlroy matched Noren's opening eight under par 64 on day two at Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club to join the Swede on 11 under par, while a delay of over two and a half hours because of lightning left half the field unable to complete their second rounds.

They will resume on Saturday morning and the third round will then not commence before 1100 once the cut is made.

The third round will be a two-tee start, looped draw, with the leaders teeing off last from the first tee.

McIlroy's round was highlighted by a string of his trademark pinpoint approach shots, his bogey-free round all the more remarkable considering he has flown halfway across the globe since the Masters Tournament and was unable to practice before his first round after his clubs arrived late.

McIlroy had suggested after his opening 69 that others were more upset about his disappointing final round in Georgia than he was.

And he certainly didn't seem too hung up as he reeled off three birdies in his first four holes after teeing off at the tenth.

He added back-to-back gains at the 16th and 17th, the first from 12 feet, to turn in a five under 31, and three more birdies on the way in completed a bogey-free round.

"I went out and played well," said McIlroy. "I have done for a couple of days but the difference was I holed a couple of putts.

"It feels good - I've got my swing in a nice groove. I feel comfortable shaping it both ways. I've been driving the ball pretty good which you need to around here. It's been really good, I've not missed many shots.

"I'm feeling good. I played well last week and I've continued that on to this week."

Asked whether he needed to prove a point by winning the former Omega Dubai Desert Classic winner added: "It would show more to everyone else other than myself that last week didn't set me back. I've started this week off great but I need to keep going and making birdies and shooting low scores if I want to win.

"Eleven under after two days here is a great effort considering I've travelled so far and not seeing the course. I'm happy with how I played."

Former Omega European Masters champion Noren mixed four birdies with a solitary dropped shot in his three under par effort - the highlight an approach to five feet at the fifth.

Like McIlroy, England's Simon Dyson signed for a 64 which left him one off the pace in the clubhouse.

The top three had opened up a sizeable lead over the rest of the field - Australian Brett Rumford and Scotland's Stephen Gallacher tied for fourth on seven under.

World Number One Martin Kaymer had a one under 71 to be three under at the halfway stage, while on the course golf's newest Major Champion Schwartzel was just inside the projected cutline.

The South African was one under for his round with five left to play to sit alongside Open Champion Louis Oosthuizen on level par.

Italian Matteo Manassero, who turns 18 on Tuesday, was level par for his round with five to play and alongside Australian Scott Barr the best placed of those still on the course - both six under and five off the pace.