By Press Association
Rory McIlroy closed with an eagle to finish the second round of the WGC HSBC Champions one shot behind leader Matthew Fitzpatrick.
McIlroy produced the shot of the day at the 538-yard par-five 18th, rolling his second shot to within three feet of the hole before sinking his putt for a second successive five-under round of 67.
The Northern Irishman strung together four straight birdies from the third hole and sank another at the 13th, but bogeys at the ninth and 16th left him one stroke adrift of Fitzpatrick.
England’s Fitzpatrick followed up his opening-round 66 with a bogey-free five-under 67, sinking birdies at the third, 12th, 13th, 17th and 18th to stay ahead of the field.
American Xander Schauffele, South Korea’s Sung-jae Im and Australian Adam Scott, who all shot opening rounds of 66, finished the second day with 69s to sit tied in third place, two shots behind Fitzpatrick.
China’s overnight leader Haotong Li, who carded a 64 on the first day, finished his second round on level par and dropped to sixth place alongside France’s Victor Perez.
England’s Paul Waring swept up the leaderboard, climbing 46 places for a share of ninth place with Austria’s Matthias Schwab after a seven-under par 65, which included five birdies and an eagle at the 18th.
American pair Bubba Watson and Kevin Kisner are tied for 11th, one shot further back after rounds of 69 and 67 respectively, while Justin Rose sits among them after a two-under round of 70.
England’s Ian Poulter has pulled out, three over after two rounds, with a wrist injury.
“I tried to see if the pain would ease off enough to be competitive, but I was simply fighting to shoot level par,” he wrote on Instagram. “That isn’t what I came for. Time to get home and see my doctor to syringe the wrist. It’s been years since he did it last time so it lasted well.”