Harrington and Lawrie just two off lead in Malaysia
Dublin duo in with chance of victory in weather-affected event
Ireland’s Peter Lawrie in action during the Maybank Malaysian Open in Kuala Lumpur. Photograph; Ian Walton/Getty Images
The Irish pair of Pádraig Harrington and Peter Lawrie put themselves in a great position to claim victory in the weather-affected Malaysian Open after the vent was reduced to 54 holes due to continued suspensions in Kuala Lumpur.
The Dublin duo are both on nine under, two shots behind Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat and one behind South Africa’s Charl Schwartzel.
After posting a second round of three-under 69 to add to his opening 68, Lawrie was two under through five holes of his third round when play was suspended.
Harrington carded a 68 in his second round and also picked up two shots in the four holes he completed of his third, and now final round. The leading group of Aphibarnrat and Schwartzel got through two holes of their final rounds.
Aphibarnrat, fourth in the Avantha Masters last week, was two clear at the halfway stage after completing the last nine holes of his second round this morning, eight pars and one birdie giving him a 68 and 11-under-par total of 133.
He maintained that cushion when both he and Schwartzel birdied the first hole of their third rounds, but dropped a shot on the next after driving into the rough.
Schwartzel, who saved par from a greenside bunker on the second, was then about to play his third shot to the par-five third when the sirens sounded to indicate an approaching thunderstorm and the threat of lightning in the area.
One star name missing was that of world number three Luke Donald, who had earlier missed the first halfway cut of his professional career in a regular European Tour event after adding a 73 to his opening 74.
“I’ve got a couple of weeks off to get ready for Augusta (the US Masters ) and I’ll obviously be very diligent in my preparation,” said Donald, who had got back to level par for the tournament yesterday, but ran up a double-bogey seven on the 10th today in a back nine of 39.
“I would have loved to go back home in form, but in golf you just never know. We’ve seen it many times before when people go into tournaments with very little form and win, including Majors. So you just have to keep plugging away and hope it’s your turn.
“The greens here are very different from what I play on. They are a little slower than what I’m used to and I just didn’t adjust or adapt to them.
“I just couldn’t read them for the life of me. I’d think it was right to left and it went the other way. I got John (his caddie) to read a few too and we were seeing the same things.
“Tee to green I wasn’t that far off. But it’s the first time I’ve missed the cut in a regular European Tour event since I’ve been a pro. So I’m very disappointed for myself and disappointed for the fans who have come out to watch me.”