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Rory McIlroy struggles on Day 2 at Quail Hollow

Updated: Saturday, 03 May 2014 13:17 | Comments

Rory McIlroy hits a shot on the third hole during the second round
Rory McIlroy hits a shot on the third hole during the second round

Martin Flores and Angel Cabrera lead the way after two rounds of the Wells Fargo Championship in Charlotte but Rory McIlroy struggled to a second-round 76 and Padraig Harrington and Darren Clarke both missed the cut.

Argentinian veteran Cabrera, who led by one shot after a first-round 66, followed that up with a 69 on Friday to ensure he kept his place at the top of the leaderboard.

Cabrera was joined at the top of the leaderboard by Flores after the American signed for a second-round 68. The round of the day, though, came from Zimbabwe’s Brendon de Jonge.

De Jonge began the day dead last on the leaderboard after shooting 80 on Thursday but turned his form around in dramatic fashion, a 10-under-par 62 vaulting him up the standings and back to two-under overall - seven shots off the joint leaders.

De Jonge's efforts saw him tie the Quail Hollow course record held by Rory McIlroy, whose final-round 62 saw him to his first career PGA victory in this tournament in 2010.

McIlroy's hopes of repeating his 2010 win receded after a nightmare round of 76 on Friday. McIlroy was spared the cut by a single stroke.

Darren Clarke’s second round of 72 was not enough to make the cut after a first-round 76. And Padraig Harrington signed for a dismal 78 after a round that included seven bogeys an one birdie.

"As horrible as yesterday was, today was as nice" - Brendon de Jonge

De Jonge's Friday charge, though, spared him from the cut and the 33-year-old was looking forward to the rest of the weekend.

"I wish I could go into every round with that kind of a mind set, but it's easier said than done," De Jonge, who made eight birdies and an eagle, said.

"As horrible as yesterday was, today was as nice. So this game gives you something and takes something away."

The story could have been even more remarkable for De Jonge when he gave himself an 18-foot putt on the last hole for a course-record 61, but it was not to be.

"I knew I had to keep going really just to make the cut, so I had that mind set all day that I needed to get out and get as far under par as possible and thank goodness it worked out," De Jonge added.

"To be honest, I didn't expect to be playing this weekend, so everything is a bonus. I have to do a good job of starting fresh tomorrow and realising that it's a new round."

The Charlotte event has been more consistent for Argentinian veteran Cabrera, who led by one shot after a first-round 66 and followed up with a 69 on Friday to ensure he kept his place at the top of the leaderboard.

Flores joined Cabrera at the top of the pile after adding a 68 to his opening 67, while England's Justin Rose is also well in the mix, his second-round 67 keeping him just a stroke off the leaders at eight under.

Scotland's Martin Laird is on five under, but England's Lee Westwood will play no further part in the weekend after he missed the cut at three over, having added a 76 to his opening 71.

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