Indian star Anirban Lahiri birdied three of his last five holes to maintain a tight grip in the weather-disrupted Worldwide Holdings Selangor Masters on Friday.
He holed a 20-feet birdie putt on the last hole for a three-under-par 68 to emerge as the second round leader on 10-under-par 132 in the RM1.3 million (approximately US$410,000) Asian Tour event.
Tour rookie Cameron Smith of Australia trailed closely by two shots following a 66, while another Indian, SSP Chowrasia, was a further two shots back in third place after shooting a 70 at the Seri Selangor Golf Club.
Australia’s Jake Higginbottom produced a flawless 65 which included an outward 31 to share fourth position with Thailand’s Chapchai Nirat (69) while Chan Yih-shin of Chinese Taipei and Chris Gaunt of Australia were on five-under with three holes to play.
The half-way stage of the Worldwide Holdings Selangor Masters was called off due to darkness after the round was delayed for approximately one hour and 30 minutes in the afternoon due to inclement weather.
A total of 21 players will resume their rounds at 7.30am on Saturday.
An in-form Lahiri, ranked second on the Order of Merit, was even-par through 13 holes but steadied ship to put himself in prime position to claim his fifth Asian Tour win and second title this year.
"I was overthinking today and had 100 things going on in my mind. But on the seventh hole, we were held up a little bit by the group in front and that gave me the opportunity to clear my head," said the 27-year-old Lahiri.
"I started talking to my caddie about inane things and when we were ready to play again, it cleared my head. So that’s what I will need to do the next time I over-think on the golf course," he smiled.
Lahiri will enter the weekend rounds with the aim of going one rung better after finishing second last year.
"When you play well, when you come back to the course, you feel confident. When I got in here on Tuesday, I had good memories from last year. When I went out there, I had that in mind and I can play well on the golf course," Lahiri explained.
Scores after round 2 of the Worldwide Holdings Selangor Masters 2014 being played at the par 71, 6955 Yards Kelab Golf Seri Selangor course (a- denotes amateur):
132 - Anirban LAHIRI (IND) 64-68.
134 - Cameron SMITH (AUS) 68-66.
136 - S.S.P CHOWRASIA (IND) 66-70.
137 - Jake HIGGINBOTTOM (AUS) 72-65, Chapchai NIRAT (THA) 68-69, Jay BAYRON (PHI) 69-68.
138 - Simon GRIFFITHS (ENG) 70-68, Shaaban HUSSIN (MAS) 68-70, David LIPSKY (USA) 72-66.
139 - Scott BARR (AUS) 70-69, KIM Gi-whan (KOR) 73-66, Carlos PIGEM (ESP) 71-68, Mardan MAMAT (SIN) 71-68.
140 - Lionel WEBER (FRA) 70-70, Jyoti RANDHAWA (IND) 71-69, Antonio LASCUNA (PHI) 70-70, Paul PETERSON (USA) 69-71, Jazz JANEWATTANANOND (THA) 70-70.
141 - Kieran PRATT (AUS) 69-72, Ryan YIP (CAN) 71-70, Ben LEONG (MAS) 72-69, Jbe KRUGER (RSA) 71-70.
142 - WANG Jeung-hun (KOR) 70-72, Thitiphun CHUAYPRAKONG (THA) 74-68, Rattanon WANNASRICHAN (THA) 69-73, Hans JAMIL (MAS) 73-69, Danny CHIA (MAS) 74-68, LU Wen-teh (TPE) 71-71.
Image: Anirban Lahiri during the second round of the Worldwide Holdings Selangor Masters.