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Rory McIlroy shoots 67 to surge into contention in Dubai

The 29-year-old is just three shots off the pace at the DP World Tour Championship.

Rory McIlroy shot consecutive rounds in the 60s to leave himself three shots off the pace in Dubai.
Rory McIlroy shot consecutive rounds in the 60s to leave himself three shots off the pace in Dubai.
Image: Kamran Jebreili

RORY MCILROY CHARGED up the leaderboard at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai after a second round 67 left him three shots off the lead.

Following a promising start to the tournament on Thursday, where he carded a 69 to sit three strokes off the pace, the Northern Irishman picked up four birdies on the front nine to kick-start his second round.

The only blemish to his card was a bogey on the third, but he closed out his opening nine holes on a score of three-under par.

After the turn, McIlroy held his nerve and shot a further three birdies and just a single bogey to close out his round on five-under par.

The 29-year-old admitted he “sort of persevered” after a shaky opening round of the tournament when he shot par, back-to-back birdies and back-to-back bogeys in his opening five holes on Thursday.

“I have to be pleased,” he told the European Tour website after his round.

“It’s a massive improvement considering the golf I’ve played the last couple of weeks. So to shoot two scores in the 60s is great.

“I feel like today was even an improvement on yesterday.

I’ve given myself plenty of chances this year, I just haven’t capitalised on those chances.

“I need to shoot another good round tomorrow to get myself right in contention on Sunday and hopefully if I can do that, I can play some good golf and it would be nice to win for a third time out there.”

Dubai Golf McIlroy plays a shot on the first hole during the second round of the DP World Tour Championship. Source: Kamran Jebreili

He is now three shots off clubhouse leader Matt Wallace who sits on 11-under par and carded a second-round 65 to maintain his fine start to the tournament.

McIlroy is hoping to finish his season with a flourish, and understandably so, after his admission this week that he may not appear on the tour next season.

The Holywood golfer said he may switch his focus to the PGA Tour and to major tournaments across the pond – in effect surrendering his European Tour card.

Having already won twice at the tournament – in 2012 and 2015 – McIlroy remains in the mix for a hat-trick of victories in the UAE.

Meanwhile, Paul Dunne climbed 12 places on the leaderboard after his second-round 69 left him on three-under par for the tournament.

The Greystones golfer put an eventful opening round – in which he made five birdies and five bogeys – behind him to card just a single bogey heading into the weekend.

Shane Lowry sits a single shot further back after a level par second round. Along with an opening round 70, the Offaly native is in a tie for 33rd on two-under par and nine shots off the lead.

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