Pádraig Harrington and Peter Lawrie face a gruelling 12-hour day when they return to the oppressive heat of Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club at dawn to complete their second rounds in the weather-delayed Maybank Malaysian Open.
Lawrie picked up a shot at the par-five third to move into the top 10 to within five strokes of provisional leader Kiradech Aphibarnrat on five under par before play was suspended at 7.25pm due to fading light.
Harrington managed just six holes, mixing birdies at the first and fifth with a bogey at the par-three fourth to finish his day tied for 20th on five under.
Former Masters champion Charl Schwartzel took a share of the clubhouse on another day disrupted by thunderstorms when he fired a four under par 68, having returned to Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club early this morning to complete the remaining seven holes of his first round, which was abandoned for the day when a huge storm hit the area.
He followed up an opening 67 with six birdies in the first 14 holes of round two, but had two late bogeys to slip back into a tie at nine under with China’s Ashun Wu (68), while Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat reached ten under par after nine holes. None of the afternoon groups finished their second round before daylight faded.
Schwartzel said: “I can’t be too hard on myself because it’s extraordinarily hot out there. I lost a bit of concentration towards the end and made bad decisions on the sixth and seventh – poor club selections. I was in the middle of the fairway both times and made bogey. I hit a very poor shot on the seventh. It’s been a very long day but through it all I thought I played pretty well.
“At least I’ve given myself a chance. I’m playing consistently and if I had been a bit sharper today I maybe could have separated myself from the field. But I know I’m playing well and I’m feeling good.
“It was slow the whole day, and when Chris (Wood) pulled out we had to wait a little longer. It’s very difficult with the heat and going slowly – it takes its toll, especially if you’ve been out there for many holes, like we were today.
“But there are no excuses and you just have to get on with it. I’m glad to have given myself a chance. It looks like it’ll be a long time before I tee off again and I’m not sure the afternoon boys will get finished today.”
World Number Three Luke Donald was two under through seven holes of his second round and level par overall, but Ballyclare’s Gareth Maybin will miss the cut after adding a 73 to his opening 77 to finish well down the field on six over.
Round two will resume at 7.45 local time on Saturday. Round three will not begin before 13.15 and will be a two-tee start.