Matthew Fitzpatrick of Sheffield, England leads after the second round of the 2019 World Golf Championship HSBC Champions event from the Sheshan Golf Club in Shanghai, China on Friday. Fitzpatrick shot a second round score of five-under par 67 and has a 36 hole score at the midway point of the tournament at -11.
Fitzpatrick leads four-time major champion Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland by one stroke. McIlroy also shot a second round score of 67, after also having a first round score of five-under par. Fitzpatrick meanwhile was six-under par in his first round.
There are five other golfers in contention of Fitzpatrick at the moment. Xander Schauffele of San Diego, CA is the top American at -9. He is tied with Sungjae Im of South Korea and 2013 Masters champion Adam Scott of Australia.
The two golfers at -8 and three shots off the lead are China’s own Haotong Li and France’s Victor Perez. Li was the leader after the first round when he shot an opening 18 hole score of eight under par. Li was steady in the second round in shooting an even round score, but was not as hot with the putter as he was in his first 18 holes.
Fitzpatrick collected five birdies in the second round. He birdied the third, 12th, 13th, 17th and 18th holes. The 12th and 17th holes were on par threes. The third and 13th holes were on par fours and the 18th hole was on a par five.
Fitzpatrick will now tee off at 10:35 pm ET with McIlroy and Schauffele. Of the players within three strokes of the lead, McIlroy, Schauffele and Scott have won World Golf Championship events in the past. Scott won the 2011 WGC Bridgestone Invitational in Akron, OH, and the 2016 WGC Cadillac Championship in Mexico City. McIlroy won the 2014 WGC Bridgestone Invitational and the 2015 WGC Cadillac Match Play Championship in San Francisco, CA. Schauffele won the 2018 WGC HSBC Champions event in Shanghai.