Paul Dunne might be wearing the wrong clothes but he's looking very much the part in the Trophée Hassan II after a four-under par 69 left him just two shots off the lead.
The 24-year-old from Greystones lost his suitcase in transit and was reluctantly forced to go clothes shopping in Rabat.
And while he was disappointed to drop shots at the 16th and 17th, he was hoping to get his luggage back yesterday and dress to impress as chases down his maiden title and halfway leader Grégory Havret at Royal Golf Dar es Salam this weekend.
“I’ve been playing well and yesterday I didn’t play well from tee to green but I managed to salvage a couple of late birdies but today I played better," said Dunne, who birdied the second and followed an eagle three at the 10th with birdies at the 11th, 12th and 15th to get to six-under-par.
“I hit my driver straighter and I was striking my irons more solidly so I gave myself a lot of chances and I’m putting well so it’s disappointing to finish with a couple of bogeys.
"I got a couple of bad lies and things didn’t go my way at the end. But I’d have taken that score at the start of the day."
As for his sartorial problems, he said: “Hopefully I get my suitcase back tonight. I have to apologise to my sponsors that I’m wearing random clothes which I bought in a shop because I lost my suitcase and it’s being found as we speak.
"I’ve had none of my own clothes this week, I had to buy them in the shops.
“It would be remiss of me if I didn’t mention that. Hopefully, I get them back tonight and I can wear the proper stuff this weekend.”
Havret finished with back-to-back bogeys but carded a three-under-par 70 to move one shot clear on six-under-par
The 40-year-old has not won on the European Tour since 2008 and famously came close to a fourth title at the US Open in 2010, finishing runner-up to Northern Irishman Graeme McDowell.
A bogey-free front nine took him to the turn in two under before a birdie at the 11th was followed by an eagle at the par five 12th.
Three bogeys in the final six holes were offset by just one birdie, however, and he could only match his opening round to edge clear of the chasing pack.
Denmark’s Lucas Bjerregaard (71) and Trevor Fisher Jnr (70) of South Africa were the closest contenders on five under par while Dunne made the most of the sunny and calm early conditions to card a rare sub-70 round to join England's James Morrison and Frenchman Grégory Bourdy in a share of fourth on four-under.
“It's always a bit of a shame to finish like this - bogey, bogey," Havret said. "It's obviously not the best but the rest was pretty good. This course is tough so you can't avoid mistakes all day long.
“So far, so good. I'm quite happy with the way it's been. I know more than anybody probably that the road is still long.
“But I'm obviously very happy, I'm playing well, I love this course, I love this place and I'm loving this country. I feel good.”
Michael Hoey followed his opening 76 with a level par 73 to miss the two-over-par cut by a single stroke.
The five-time European Tour winner was on the cut line with three holes to go but double bogeyed his 16th hole and while he birdied the eighth, his 17th, he couldn't make the birdie two he needed at the ninth.
“It was a bit different to yesterday, yesterday I played great except for a few really bad shots but today my bad shots were a little bit better. I didn’t give myself the chances I got yesterday, so a little bit more boring scorecard – not as many birdies but not as many mistakes either
“I made a couple of par saves and all in all I’m happy, it’s tricky out there when the wind is blowing everywhere and you can’t feel it in the trees so I’m pretty happy.
“I’ve played the par fives well. I parred eight today, that was the only one. They’re quite long so that definitely suits me and I’ve hit some good drives on them. I’ve only hit one green in two but I’ve been in the right places which is important around here with those small greens, you have to be on the right side.
“It’s a good position to be in. As I said yesterday, after five weeks off it’s nice to come out and play well and it’s nice to play well today, to see yesterday wasn’t just a once off. I’m in good shape and I’m feeling good about my game, I’m looking forward to the weekend.”
Trevor Fisher Jnr
“I’ve had a few good holes and a few bad holes out there. It was tricky out there today, you’ve got to hit the ball pretty good, you’ve got to hit your irons good. It’s a tough course so if you can shoot under par you should be happy.
“It’s going to be a nice weekend, it’ll be a good test. If I can try and find some good feelings I’ll have a good chance at the end of the week. I’ll be fighting and we’ll see what happens on Sunday, hopefully, I can do something special.”
“I hit a good third shot into 18 and it’s run over the green, then after an OK chip I hit a really good putt which was going in the front edge all the way. I’m guessing the group before had nicked the hole when they took the flag out so there was a little ramp in front of the hole, but that’s the way it goes.
“A six at the last is obviously disappointing but I’ve still got a good chance now. It’s a tough course but it seems like people are talking it up to be harder than it actually it. I’m not saying it’s easy, it’s a very tough golf course but if you start listening to other people’s thoughts about it, it’ll make your own thoughts change.
“It’s hard and you’ve got to play well but at the same time you’ll still get birdie chances. I’m looking forward to it, it’s a golf course I’m loving playing. It sets up for a really good weekend.”
“I am very pleased about my game, again it was a very good day. I played solid the whole round and I think the driver was the key again today. I made a lot of fairways and it’s much easier when you do that, there are so many tricky greens. It was a good day.
“It’s good to be in this position, two shots behind the leader Greg and with a few guys nearby. I am feeling good and confident and I really like this course so I’m enjoying every minute.”
140 G Havret (Fra) 70 70,
141 T Fisher Jnr (RSA) 71 70, L Bjerregaard (Den) 70 71,
142 Paul Dunne (Irl) 73 69, J Morrison (Eng) 70 72, G Bourdy (Fra) 71 71,
143 T Lewis (Eng) 75 68, D Frittelli (RSA) 71 72, B Hebert (Fra) 75 68, J Campillo (Esp) 74 69,
144 V Dubuisson (Fra) 73 71, R Gouveia (Por) 75 69, C Hanson (Eng) 74 70, D Stewart (Sco) 72 72, D Brooks (Eng) 73 71, L Jensen (Den) 75 69, J Edfors (Swe) 73 71, M Lorenzo-Vera (Fra) 72 72, P Edberg (Swe) 71 73,
145 M Ilonen (Fin) 72 73, E Molinari (Ita) 71 74, M Pavon (Fra) 72 73, R Gonzalez (Arg) 74 71, P Larrazábal (Esp) 72 73, P Waring (Eng) 74 71, S Heisele (Ger) 72 73, G Stal (Fra) 70 75, A Otaegui (Esp) 73 72, A Karlsson (Swe) 72 73,
146 W Ormsby (Aus) 75 71, L Slattery (Eng) 74 72, J Van Zyl (RSA) 71 75, M Armitage (Eng) 76 70, S Soderberg (Swe) 73 73, A Levy (Fra) 71 75, M Manassero (Ita) 72 74, J Winther (Den) 72 74, A Saddier (Fra) 73 73, M Foster (Eng) 72 74,
147 R Paratore (Ita) 73 74, R Bland (Eng) 74 73, C Pigem (Esp) 75 72, J Dantorp (Swe) 73 74, L Canter (Eng) 74 73, A Wall (Eng) 74 73, S Tiley (Eng) 75 72, J Guerrier (Fra) 76 71, R Echenique (Arg) 73 74, A Chesters (Eng) 73 74, J Luiten (Ned) 75 72, B Evans (Eng) 72 75, M Nixon (Eng) 74 73, D Im (USA) 74 73, A Rai (Eng) 72 75, H Porteous (RSA) 77 70, S Gros (Fra) 77 70, M Orrin (Eng) 71 76, A Lguirati (am) (Mar) 76 71,
148 J Smith (Eng) 73 75, R Karlberg (Swe) 75 73, D Drysdale (Sco) 72 76, R Wattel (Fra) 72 76, C Paisley (Eng) 76 72, J Stalter (Fra) 76 72, J Lagergren (Swe) 75 73, D Perrier (Fra) 74 74, R Johnson (Swe) 72 76, A Cañizares (Esp) 72 76, J Fahrbring (Swe) 73 75, D Burmester (RSA) 78 70, M Southgate (Eng) 75 73,
149 E Pepperell (Eng) 73 76, R Dinwiddie (Eng) 76 73, A Marshall (Eng) 75 74, F Fritsch (Ger) 76 73, Michael Hoey (Nir) 76 73, T Linard (Fra) 77 72, N Elvira (Esp) 73 76, N Fasth (Swe) 78 71, R Rock (Eng) 72 77, N Bertasio (Ita) 72 77, B Stone (RSA) 75 74, T Detry (Bel) 72 77, J Quesne (Fra) 73 76, D Howell (Eng) 73 76, G Porteous (Eng) 76 73, C Sordet (Fra) 71 78, M Korhonen (Fin) 74 75,
150 R Jacquelin (Fra) 74 76, C Shinkwin (Eng) 76 74, E De La Riva (Esp) 77 73, E Compton (USA) 75 75, J Carlsson (Swe) 75 75, S Jamieson (Sco) 72 78, R Sterne (RSA) 76 74, J Wang (Kor) 77 73, R Ramsay (Sco) 74 76, M Siem (Ger) 75 75,
151 J Rutherford (Eng) 78 73, P Widegren (Swe) 75 76, D Horsey (Eng) 73 78, R Green (Aus) 77 74, F Serghini (Mar) 76 75, R Langasque (Fra) 77 74, A Björk (Swe) 80 71, Y El Hassani (Mar) 77 74,
152 T Bjørn (Den) 77 75, J Donaldson (Wal) 77 75, N Kimsey (Eng) 80 72, S Manley (Wal) 72 80,
153 R Saxton (Ned) 76 77, S Gallacher (Sco) 78 75, N Holman (Aus) 78 75, B Ritthammer (Ger) 77 76, R Karlsson (Swe) 77 76, O Fisher (Eng) 77 76, A Knappe (Ger) 75 78, A Marjan (Mar) 77 76, Z Lombard (RSA) 76 77,
154 N Colsaerts (Bel) 77 77, J Walters (RSA) 75 79, Y Touhami (Mar) 82 72, S Dyson (Eng) 79 75, G King (Eng) 76 78, J Heath (Eng) 77 77, P Maddy (Eng) 77 77, R McEvoy (Eng) 75 79, P Angles (Esp) 79 75, J Lima (Por) 77 77, A Id-Omar (am) (Mar) 78 76,
155 S Henry (Sco) 79 76, H Otto (RSA) 75 80, S Walker (Eng) 78 77,
156 C Hinton (Eng) 78 78,
157 M Kieffer (Ger) 80 77, J Ahlers (RSA) 81 76, Y Yang (Kor) 79 78, D Boshart (Ned) 77 80, F Aguilar (Chi) 78 79, R Finch (Eng) 81 76,
159 A Sabi (Mar) 80 79,
160 M Weir (Can) 81 79, S Luna (Esp) 82 78,
** J Parry (Eng) 80 WD,