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Page last updated at 13:15 GMT, Friday, 20 November 2009

Westwood snatches lead in Dubai

SECOND ROUND LEADERBOARD:
-9 L Westwood (Eng) -7 P Harrington (Ire), R McIlroy (NI), R McGowan (Eng), R Allenby (Aus), C Villegas (Col), L Oosthuizen (SA)
Selected others: -6 S Garcia (Spa) -2 M Kaymer (Ger) level R Fisher


Lee Westwood
Westwood carded four birdies and one bogey in his 69

Lee Westwood leads Race to Dubai rival Rory McIlroy by two shots after two rounds of the Dubai World Championship.

England's Westwood fired a second-round 69 to lead the field on nine under par, while McIlroy carded the same score.

Six men go into the weekend on seven under, including Ireland's Padraig Harrington, who also returned a 69.

Northern Ireland's McIlroy leads Westwood in the money list by £115,000, but Westwood would topple him if he won, wherever McIlroy finished.

Victory for Westwood would land him a £1.6m jackpot, courtesy of a tournament first prize of £744,000 and a money list bonus of £900,000.

And after his three-under-par round, he revealed caddie Billy Foster has banned him from looking at the leaderboard this week.

606: DEBATE

He said: "I have no interest in anybody else's game. I've never done it before and it will be hard, but I will look on Sunday night.

"Looking at the board [he allows himself to do that once off the course] there's probably nobody more experienced than the pair of us, so hopefully that will have a massive effect.

"He [Foster] has had a few really good bits of advice - and if it turns out well I'll tell you them all on Sunday evening."

The 20-year-old McIlroy remains in the running, however, with a win on Sunday also guaranteeing him the title of European number one.

Germany's Martin Kaymer (71) and England's Ross Fisher (71), who can also top the money list, are two under and level par respectively.

Kaymer is out of the reckoning if he fails to finish in the top four, while Fisher needs to be first or second on Sunday - his 29th birthday.

I'd be lying if I said it was my favourite course. It's not a bomber's course and it's not a plodder's course

Ross Fisher

McIlroy led by two after a dazzling front-nine 31, but three-putted the 14th and 15th in coming home in 38.

That left Harrington in front, but he put two balls in water on the 620-yard final hole at Greg Norman's new Earth Course.

The three-time major champion escaped with a double-bogey seven before Westwood birdied the same hole to double his advantage.

Also lurking two off the lead on seven under are England's Ross McGowan, Colombian Camilo Villegas, Australia's first-round leader Robert Allenby and South African Louis Oosthuizen.

McIlroy, who missed two three-foot par putts coming home, said: "I'm still in a good position. I felt like I played the back nine OK, but it was just those two short putts."

Westwood led by two himself after matching McIlroy's two opening birdies, but bogeyed the 8th and did not have another birdie until the 16th.

After slipping out of the reckoning, Kaymer and Fisher both revealed their dislike of the course.

Fisher said: "I'm really disappointed. I felt I played really, really well, but now I've just got to try to go for everything.

"I'd be lying if I said it was my favourite course. It's not a bomber's course and it's not a plodder's course and I just think the greens could be a little bit smaller.

"I also think you should be able to see a lot more greens with your second shot. I think you could be counting on one hand the greens you can actually see.

"It's bizarre. You hit a good shot and you hit it right down the flag and it could be stiff or it could be 30 feet. You just don't know. There you go."


The Race to Dubai standings after round two:

Lee Westwood (-9) - 1st
Race to Dubai position: 2nd
Trails McIlroy by £114,829 but will become European number one if he wins in Dubai. If he is second he will be champion if McIlroy is not first or tied second and Kaymer does not win.

Rory McIlroy (-7) - Joint 2nd
Race to Dubai position: 1st
Will take the crown regardless of how he plays if Westwood is outside the top seven, Kaymer the top four and Fisher the top two.

Martin Kaymer (-1) - Joint 22nd
Race to Dubai position: 3rd
Trails by £184,470. Needs a top-four finish to do it, but only if Westwood finishes behind him, McIlroy outside the top 30 and Fisher does not win.

Ross Fisher (+1) - Joint 40th
Race to Dubai position: 4th
Trails by £388,284. Has to finish first or second just to have a chance and even victory would not be enough if Westwood or McIlroy are second.



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see also
Westwood leads McIlroy in Dubai
19 Nov 09 |  Golf
Star trio set for Dubai shoot-out
18 Nov 09 |  Golf
Singh talk swayed McIlroy US move
18 Nov 09 |  Golf
McIlroy upbeat ahead of title bid
16 Nov 09 |  Golf
Westwood chips in on 606
11 Nov 09 |  Golf
Bourdy wins after McIlroy charge
15 Nov 09 |  Golf
McIlroy eyes European top spot
10 Nov 09 |  Golf
Injury forces Casey to skip Dubai
14 Nov 09 |  Golf
Golf on the BBC
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