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Paul Lawrie leads Qatar Masters, Nicolas Colsaerts second

A second round of 66 saw Paul Lawrie assume the familiar position as leader of the Qatar Masters by one shot from Nicolas Colsaerts.

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Paul Lawrie is on course to become the first player to win the Qatar Masters three times after moving into a one-shot lead after the second round on Thursday.

The evergreen Scotsman carded a six-under 66 at Doha Golf Club to move to 11 under at the halfway mark, with overnight leaders Louis Oosthuizen and Pablo Larrazabal failing to build on impressive starts.

Lawrie had the benefit of more favourable conditions in the morning, making seven birdies and dropping only one shot before the wind picked up.

The 47-year-old, a winner of the European Tour event in 1999 and 2012, held a two-shot advantage until Nicolas Colsaerts birdied his final hole to stand alone in second place.

Big-hitting Belgian Colsaerts was level par for his second round after nine holes after starting at the 10th, but eagled the first and birdies at five and nine put him just one shot adrift of Lawrie.

Gregory Bourdy, Andrew Johnston and Rafa Cabrera-Bello are well poised just two shots off the lead.

It was a day to remember for Frenchman Bourdy, who made his first hole in one and also made three birdies to move to nine under.

Bourdy holed his tee shot at the 185-yard par-three eighth for an ace, while four birdies on the back nine kept Johnston firmly in contention and a blemish-free 68 earned Cabrera-Bello a share of third.

Sergio Garcia made a move in his first tournament of the year, going round in an impressive six-under 66 to sit just three shots off the lead after starting the day on two under.

The charismatic Spaniard, champion in 2014, hit all 18 greens in regulation after missing only two on Wednesday and showed off his dance moves on the green at the eighth after holing a huge birdie putt.

Defending champion Branden Grace is in with a chance of becoming the first man to retain the Qatar Masters following a 67 that ensured he will tee off on Friday as one of several players on seven under.

Oosthuizen slipped back to six under, while Larrazabal is one shot better off than the South African.

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