Australia’s Nathan Holman opened up a two-shot lead after the second round of the Maybank Championship Malaysia, following up his opening 64 with a 65 at Royal Selangor Golf Club.
Three birdies in his last four holes saw the 24-year-old top the leaderboard on 13-under-par, two clear of England’s Richard Bland who also signed in a 65.
Holman won the Australian PGA Championship last December and is now on course to register his first win on foreign soil.
“After winning at home my next aim was to win a tournament overseas, so it’s great to have the chance to tick that one off the list so soon,” said Holman, who birdied all the par-fives for the second consecutive day.
Pre-tournament favourite Danny Willett of England, Spaniard Jorge Campillo, Soomin Lee of Korea and Filipino talent Miguel Tabuena are on eight-under-par, five shots off the lead.
American Casey O’Toole stole some of the limelight when he scored a hole-in-one at the par-three 12th hole, winning a million Hilton Hotels points.
Of the 16 Malaysians in the field, four made the cut on the bubble at one-under-par – Wilson Choo, Shaaban Hussin, Nicholas Fung and Kemarol Baharin. After an opening 73, Kemarol recovered well to card a 68 and make it to the weekend.
Leading Round 2 Scores
129 – Nathan Holman (AUS) 64 -65
131 – Richard Bland (ENG) 66-65
134 – Jorge Campillo (ESP) 65-69, Soomin Lee (KOR) 66-68, Miguel Tabuena (PHI) 66-68, Danny Willett (ENG) 65-69
135 – Thongchai Jaidee (THA) 66-69, Marcus Fraser (AUS) 66-69
136 – Andrew Dodt (AUS) 69-67, Thaworn Wiratchant (THA) 69-67, Masahiro Kawamura (JPN) 66-70