Pádraig Harrington makes Kuala Lumpur cut on injury return

Ryder Cup captain shoots 73 on Friday as Thomas Pieters leads into the weekend

Pádraig Harrington has made the cut on his return to action in Kuala Lumpur. Photograph: Andrew Redington/Getty

Pádraig Harrington has made the cut on his return to action in Kuala Lumpur. Photograph: Andrew Redington/Getty

 

Thomas Pieters will take a one-shot lead into the weekend at the Maybank Championship as he bids to end his two-and-a-half-year wait for a regular European Tour title.

The 2016 Ryder Cup star produced a second-round 69 at Saujana Golf and Country Club on Friday to move to eight under par.

And that total was enough to give the Belgian the outright lead at the halfway stage after overnight co-leader Nacho Elvira carded a double-bogey and a bogey in successive holes on the back nine to fall from the top of the leaderboard.

Meanwhile Pádraig Harrington’s interest will continue into the weekend - he made the cut after following up his opening round of 70 with a one over par round of 73 on Friday.

Ryder Cup captain Harrington is playing his first tournament since breaking his wrist last November, and said on Thursday he was “delighted” with his return to action.

And he will have another two rounds to play on his comeback, after he made four bogeys and three birdies on Friday, leaving him on one under par for the tournament - comfortably inside the one over par cut mark.

Spain’s Elvira, who had led by four strokes at one stage during his second round, sits in a tie for second alongside Indonesia’s Danny Masrin on seven under.

Pieters, who won the World Cup of Golf with Belgium team-mate Thomas Detry late last year, saw room for improvement following a tricky afternoon in Kuala Lumpur.

Thomas Pieters has the halfway lead in Kuala Lumpur. Photograph: Andrew Redington/Getty
Thomas Pieters has the halfway lead in Kuala Lumpur. Photograph: Andrew Redington/Getty

He told the European Tour’s website: “I struggled off the tee early on — at the end it was a lot better.

“It didn’t feel like a good day to me, I made the best of what I had. I gave myself a lot of chances but I couldn’t seem to get the ball in the hole.”

Four-time major champion Ernie Els was among the large group on six under, while Oliver Fisher led the British charge on four under.

Collated second round scores & totals in the European Tour Maybank Championship (Gbr & Irl unless stated, par 72):

136 Thomas Pieters (Bel) 67 69
137 Daniel James Masrin (Ina) 69 68, Nacho Elvira (Spa) 65 72
138 Jazz Janewattananond (Tha) 66 72, Dean Burmester (Rsa) 68 70, Lucas Herbert (Aus) 69 69, Maximilian Kieffer (Ger) 71 67, Ernie Els (Rsa) 68 70, David Lipsky (USA) 72 66, Paul Peterson (USA) 70 68
139 Shubhankar Sharma (Ind) 71 68, Scott Hend (Aus) 69 70, Prom Meesawat (Tha) 68 71, Guido Migliozzi (Spa) 71 68, Zack Murrary (Aus) 68 71, Masahiro Kawamura (Jpn) 69 70
140 Julian Suri (USA) 69 71, Andrea Pavan (Ita) 69 71, Louis De Jager (Rsa) 71 69, Erik Van Rooyen (Rsa) 71 69, Oliver Fisher 70 70
141 Kurt Kitayama (USA) 70 71, Siddikur Rahman (Ban) 70 71, Darren Fichardt (Rsa) 76 65, Matthias Schwab (Aut) 66 75, Nicholas Fung (Mal) 68 73, Pavit Tangkamolprasert (Tha) 72 69, Johannes Veerman (USA) 72 69, Thomas Detry (Bel) 70 71
142 Ricardo Gouveia (Por) 69 73, Kristoffer Broberg (Swe) 72 70, Shaun Norris (Rsa) 71 71, Matthieu Pavon (Fra) 73 69, Brandon Stone (Rsa) 68 74, Viraj Madappa (Ind) 70 72, Chris Paisley 71 71, Andrew Sullivan 72 70, Jordan Smith 74 68, Benjamin Hebert (Fra) 69 73, Poom Saksansin (Tha) 68 74, Scott Vincent (Zim) 70 72, Marcus Fraser (Aus) 65 77
143 S.S.P Chawrasia (Ind) 69 74, Ross Fisher 72 71, Wen-Tang Lin (Tpe) 73 70, Jorge Campillo (Spa) 70 73, George Coetzee (Rsa) 72 71, Matthew Southgate 74 69, Lee Slattery 72 71, Thongchai Jaidee (Tha) 72 71, Christiaan Bezuidenhout (Rsa) 69 74, Gaganjeet Bhullar (Ind) 68 75, Angelo Que (Phl) 66 77, Padraig Harrington 70 73
144 David Law 73 71, Terry Pilkadaris (Aus) 69 75, Min Chel Choi (Kor) 71 73, Ashun Wu (Chn) 71 73, Renato Paratore (Ita) 73 71, Robert Karlsson (Swe) 71 73, Robert Rock 73 71, Jarin Todd (USA) 73 71, S Chikkarangappa (Ind) 75 69, Gavin Green (Mal) 74 70, Hyun-woo Ryu (Kor) 74 70, Mike Lorenzo-Vera (Fra) 72 72, Richard McEvoy 70 74, Nicolas Colsaerts (Bel) 70 74, Ryan Fox (Nzl) 71 73, Ajeetesh Sandhu (Ind) 72 72, Micah Lauren Shin (USA) 74 70, Fabrizio Zanotti (Pry) 72 72, Keith Horne (Rsa) 71 73, Min Woo Lee (Aus) 73 71

The following players did not make the cut:

145 Sang-hyun Park (Kor) 70 75, Soren Kjeldsen (Den) 75 70, Chris Wood 71 74, Jesse Yap (Sgp) 74 71, Khalin Joshi (Ind) 73 72, Jake Higginbottom (Aus) 71 74, Panuphol Pittayarat (Tha) 75 70, Berry Henson (USA) 74 71, Ryo Ishikawa (Jpn) 71 74, Chapchai Nirat (Tha) 74 71, Danny Chia (Mal) 72 73, Danthai Boonma (Tha) 71 74, Jens Dantorp (Swe) 71 74
146 Sihwan Kim (Kor) 70 76, Arie Ahmad Irawan (Mal) 76 70, Alexander Bjork (Swe) 73 73, Alvaro Quiros (Spa) 71 75, Aaron Rai 72 74, Robin Roussel (Fra) 71 75, Stephen Gallacher 74 72, Yi-Keun Chang (Kor) 72 74, Prayad Marksaeng (Tha) 75 71, Travis Smyth (Aus) 70 76, Edoardo Molinari (Ita) 73 73
147 Marcus Kinhult (Swe) 70 77, Steven Brown 75 72, Adilson Da Silva (Bra) 72 75, Yuki Inamori (Jpn) 74 73, Shinichi Mizuno (Jpn) 73 74, Mikko Korhonen (Fin) 73 74, Tapio Pulkkanen (Fin) 73 74, Ben Campbell (Nzl) 75 72, Arjun Atwal (Ind) 73 74, Jeunghun Wang (Kor) 73 74, Shahriffuddin Ariffin (Mal) 71 76, Wade Ormsby (Aus) 75 72, Adrian Otaegui (Spa) 73 74, Bernd Wiesberger (Aut) 71 76
148 Rahil Gangjee (Ind) 76 72, Adri Arnaus (Spa) 80 68, Ben Leong (Mal) 74 74, Wei-Chih Lu (Tha) 73 75, David Howell 74 74, Ashley Chesters 72 76, Jason Scrivener (Aus) 73 75, Miguel Angel Jimenez (Spa) 75 73, Jbe Kruger (Rsa) 74 74, Thomas Bjorn (Den) 73 75, John Catlin (USA) 74 74, Daisuke Kataoka (Jpn) 73 75
149 Shiv Kapur (Ind) 77 72, R Nachimuthu (Mal) 74 75, Hideto Tanihara (Jpn) 77 72
150 Phachara Khongwatmai (Tha) 72 78, Kenneth Ger Silva (Mal) 73 77, Malcolm Kokocinski (Swe) 73 77, Rattanon Wannasrichan (Tha) 74 76, Sukree Othman (Mal) 76 74, Richard T Lee (Can) 80 70, Suradit Yongcharoenchai (Tha) 73 77
151 Romain Wattel (Fra) 75 76, Leun-Kwang Kim (Mal) 78 73, Yusaku Miyazato (Jpn) 71 80, Raphael Jacquelin (Fra) 72 79
152 Johnson Poh (Sgp) 75 77, Wilson Choo (Mal) 75 77, Nino Bertasio (Ita) 77 75, Jacques Kruyswijk (Rsa) 74 78
153 Jason Norris (Aus) 75 78, Sam Brazel (Aus) 74 79
154 Natipong Srithong (Tha) 77 77
156 Tirawat Kaewsiribandit (Tha) 81 75, Amir Nazrin (Ind) 80 76, Ye Htet Aung (Mmr) 75 81, Jake McLeod (Aus) 81 75
157 Yuta Ikeda (Jpn) 81 76, Pablo Larrazabal (Spa) 79 78
159 Kemarol Baharin (Mal) 81 78, Shih-Chang Chan (Tpe) 80 79

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