Darren Clarke is just five shots off the lead in the BMW PGA Championship. Credit: www.golffile.ieQuestions will be answered at Wentworth over the next two days.

Is Darren Clarke - five behind leaders Luke Donald, Matteo Manassero and Álvaro Quirós after a closing bogey six for a 72 - really as “rejuvenated” as the commentators would have us believe?

Can Rory McIlroy produce a Quail Hollow style weekend and keep his composure long enough to come from 10 strokes off the pace to win the BMW PGA Championship?

Michael Hoey is having another good week. Credit: www.golffile.ieWill Michael Hoey (71-74 for +3) have recovered from the ailments that saw him head to see the physio after three closing bogeys turned a good round into an average one?

Can Gareth Maybin (74-70 for +2) or Shane Lowry (74-72 for +4) make further in roads in the Race to Dubai standings?

Alas for world No 5 Graeme McDowell, the only question yet to be answered is the exact time of his arrival at Wembley for tonight’s Champions League final.

The US Open champion missed the four over par cut by a shot after a 72 that was characterised by some poor scrambling on the old Burma Road course. Ranked inside the top 30 this week for fairways and greens hit in regulation, he was 111th for putts per round and scrambled successfully just 38.4 percent of the time.

Shane Lowry is driving the ball a long way at Wentworth. Credit: www.golffile.ieIt was the 31-year old’s fourth missed cut of the season (he missed just four cuts in the whole of last year) and he will be keen to shown some improvement around the greens when he defends the Saab Wales Open at Celtic Manor next week in his last start before his US Open defence at Congressional.

Peter Lawrie has family matters on his mind as his wife prepares to give birth to their fourth child. But he will still have been disappointed to miss the cut by three shots after a 75 that saw him come home in 40 with four successive bogeys from the 14th.

David Higgins, Damien McGrane, Paul McGinley and David Mortimer had all done too much damage to their cause on Thursday to entertain much hope of making the cut.

McGinley broke the 30-putt barrier each day but was uncharacteristically crooked off the tee, finishing 126th in the driving accuracy statistics with a strike rate of just 39.3 percent.

That category is lead by Clarke and Colin Montgomerie who have missed just two fairways each day.

Rory McIlroy made a fine comeback on Friday with a one under 70. Can he come from 10 shots behind to win? Credit: www.golffile.ieClarke is stiking the ball as well as he ever did and whether he is rejuvenated or not, he has taken an average of 27.5 putts per round thanks to his brilliance from tee to green.

He’s made just two bogeys all week but when putting for birdie, he’s among the least effective of the players to make the cut, which might not been a huge problem on a course has become one of the toughest the players face all years.

McIlroy has been even less effective than Clarke on the greens so far and needs at least one low round to have a chance.

If he can find it, his Friday night Twitter ambitions might not sound so outlandish after all.

“10 back going into the weekend….,” he tweeted before retiring for the evening to his digs at Eddie Jordan’s Wentworth home. “I’ve won from this position before, let’s see if I can do it again!!”

Cool customer Matteo Manassero. The 18-year old is tied for the lead at Wentworth. Credit: www.golffile.ie (Click to enlarge)Donald struggled at times and followed his stunning 64 in tough conditions with a 72 on a far easier day. It was a missed opportunity to move well clear of the field but he now has latino company at the top of the leaderboard. 

Quirós birdied the last three for a 67 as the increasingly impressive Manassero continued serenely on his way with a 70 despite some struggles from tee to green.

The trio leads by two shots from ace ballstrikers Jose Manuel Lara (70), David Horsey (68) and Thomas Aiken (67) with world No 1 Lee Westwood suddenly lurking just five behind alongside his buddy Clarke on one under after a two under 69.