World Golf Championships: Rory McIlroy leads by two shots at halfway stage

McIlroy is playing his first tournament since 15 January
WGC Mexico Championships, second-round leaderboard:
-9 R McIlroy (NI); -7 P Mickelson (US), R Fisher (Eng), J Thomas (US); -6 A Sullivan (Eng), D Berger (US), D Johnson (US)
Selected others: -5 T Hatton, -4 M Fitzpatrick (Eng), L Westwood (Eng), R Fowler (US); -3 T Fleetwood (Eng); -1 C Wood (Eng); Level J Rose (Eng); +1 J Spieth (US); +6 D Willet (Eng)
Full leaderboard (external site)

Rory McIlroy carded a stunning six-under-par 65 to take a two-shot lead at the halfway stage of the World Golf Championships event in Mexico.

The Northern Irishman is nine under after a round that included an eagle, as he holed out from 151 yards on the par-four 14th, and six birdies.

Americans Phil Mickelson and Justin Thomas are tied for second with England's Ross Fisher.

Another Englishman, Andy Sullivan, is on five under after a 65.

He is tied for fifth with world number one Dustin Johnson, while England's Tyrell Hatton is a shot further back.

Hatton's compatriot Lee Westwood, the joint overnight leader, stayed at four under after a level-par 71 and is in a five-way tie for 14th that includes compatriot Matthew Fitzpatrick.

World number three McIlroy, 27, is playing his first tournament after seven weeks out with a rib injury.

His round could have been even better but he bogeyed the 12th and 17th.

"I'm in a great position, but I felt like I could have been a few more ahead," said McIlroy.

Olympic champion Justin Rose shot a 72 to move to level par, while American Jordan Spieth is one over and Masters champion Danny Willet is six over.


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