Shane Lowry, Sam Horsfield and John Catlin shared the second-round lead Friday at the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, a shot ahead of Rory McIlroy and Alexander Bjork.
Ireland’s Lowry eagled the par-5 14th hole at Jumeirah Golf Estates on his way to a 7-under 65 that pushed him to 10 under. He hit a short flop shot from the side of the green and it rolled on a downslope before hitting the cup and dropping in.
“That was one of my better ones. That was top drawer,” Lowry said. “That was as good a chip as I hit in a while. I knew when I missed it over there it was going to be difficult. And it was one of those, I seen the shot and I just went for it. That’s what you need to do and that’s what I did.”
Catlin, an American who primarily plays the European Tour, matched Lowry’s 65 with eight birdies against one bogey. Horsfield, of England, carded a 66 and also had eight birdies but bogeyed Nos. 16 and 17 before rebounding with a birdie at the last.
McIlroy held the first-round lead following a 65 Thursday and led the tournament at 11 under when he teed it up at the last hole, but his third shot on the par-5 18th found the water and he eventually posted a double-bogey 7 to finish with a 70 and drop to 9 under.
“It wasn’t the greatest way to finish and I was just sort of holding it together most of the day,” the four-time major champ from Northern Ireland said. “I was a little scrappier than it was yesterday but felt like I was doing okay.”
Sweden’s Bjork posted a 5-under 67 Friday. Two shots off the lead, at 8 under, are German Martin Kaymer (68) and American Collin Morikawa (68), who led the Race to Dubai points race entering the week owing in part to his July victory at the Open Championship.