Padraig Harrington fought off the effects of a stomach bug to storm home in 32 and go into the third round of the weather-delayed Iskandar Johor Open just two shots behind leader Daniel Chopra.
The defending champion was six behind the Swede with nine to play when the second round was suspended on Friday due to electrical activity at Horizon Hills Golf and Country Club in Malaysia.
But he got off to a fast start when play resumed at 7.20am local time on Saturday, picking up birdies at the 11th, 12th, 16th and 18th to card a four under 67 and share second place with Race to Dubai rival James Morrison (65) and Frenchman Gregory Bourdy (67) on 11 under par.
Michael Hoey shot a four under par 67 to move into the top-20 on six under while Peter Lawrie survived bogeys at his final two holes - the eighth and ninth - to make the cut on the two under par limit after a 71.
The bad news from an Irish perspective is that Damien McGrane and Gareth Maybin both missed the cut by a stroke and now face a desperate battle to finish in the top 115 on the money list who will keep their tour cards.
McGrane, who was 110th in the Race to Dubai standings starting the week, was facing an uphill task after an opening 73. But while he birdied the 14th, 15th and 16th to get into red figures, he but could not pick up any more shots in a second round 68.
Maybin, ranked 117th, was two under for the tournament playing the par five 18th but took six there to card a 71 and will now play in next week’s €1m South African Open in a late bid to haul himself back into the top 115.
McGrane is under less pressure but both men will need to play well in the final regular event of the season, the UBS Hong Open in two weeks’ time, to avoid the dreaded Q-School.
Harrington is also entered for Hong Kong. But the three-time major winner is facing a different kind of pressure as he bids to finish the season inside the top 60 in the money list who qualify for the season-ending Dubai World Championship.
The world No 83 is a lowly 76th in the money list, €86,592 adrift of 60th ranked Morrison.
If Harrington wins in Johor, he will pick up €242,580 and move into the top 50 in the money list, guaranteeing his place in Dubai.
He could sneak into the top 60 with a runner up cheque for €161,720 but would still have to defend his position with a solid performance in Hong Kong.
Muskerry’s Niall Turner missed the cut by five shots after a 75.