Everything you need to know from Friday in Dubai.
Nicolai Højgaard leapt ahead, Tommy Fleetwood was following his heart, Thriston Lawrence went low and putts were going in from everywhere on day two of the DP World Tour Championship.
Here is everything you need to know from round two at Jumeirah Golf Estates.
Big finish hands Højgaard halfway lead
Højgaard will take a two-shot lead into the weekend after a stunning finish to his second round. The Dane arrived at the Earth Course on day two in a share of the lead but back-to-back bogeys saw him stumble and he was still a long way behind despite fighting back to turn in level par. A birdie on the tenth signalled the start of better things, though, and he added two more before finishing birdie-eagle to come home in 30 and sign for a 66 that left him at 11 under. His Ryder Cup team-mates Tommy Fleetwood and Viktor Hovland were in the group in second after rounds of 66 alongside South Africa's Thriston Lawrence - who fired the round of the day with a 64 - and Swede Jens Dantorp and Frenchman Antoine Rozner, who both signed for 67s. "I feel like (a win is) the only thing I missed this season but there's two rounds to go," said Højgaard. "There's a lot of really good players in this field I know that's going to be in the hunt the next few days and I'm going to keep grinding as much as I can and put myself around, hopefully, and we'll see on Sunday."
Lawrence feeling confident
Lawrence is hoping the confidence gained from a remarkable winning start to his DP World Tour career can propel him to his biggest victory yet. It is almost two years since the South African burst onto the scene with his triumph at the Joburg Open and he followed that up with another win in Switzerland en route to being crowned Sir Henry Cotton Rookie of the Year. That is a title he is about to surrender but if there were a prize for leading sophomore season, he would surely be in contention to take it after winning his home open and the BMW International Open in the 2023 season. He has yet to register a top ten in a Rolex Series event and carded rounds of 72-76-71-70 at Jumeirah Golf Estates on his debut last season but, after an opening 71, signed for a stunning bogey-free 64 this time around to head into the weekend just two shots off the lead. "Consistency-wise the last two years, it's been unbelievable," he said. "But winning does help. But you never get too used to it. Getting into contention is a different ball-game as well. Just confidence-wise, keeping it high feels good."
Fleetwood has his heart in victory bid
Fleetwood has set his sights on adding his name to the illustrious past champions over the Earth Course after putting himself firmly in contention at the halfway stage. The Englishman is a resident of Jumeirah Golf Estates and made full advantage of his course knowledge with a six-under-par 66 on Friday. Since its inception in 2009, the DP World Tour Championship has been won by a host of European stars including Major Champions Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm and Matt Fitzpatrick. Already a six-time winner on the DP World Tour, the World Number 15 is excited to be in position to contend for his third Rolex Series title over the Earth course. “It's always great to be here,” said Fleetwood. “This tournament is close to my heart now. I am just looking forward to the weekend. I always feel like it brings out great champions, so the ultimate goal is to be one of those. Put my name on the trophy."
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