Willett shares lead with Rahm at PGA Championship

Wentworth (United Kingdom) (AFP) –


Danny Willett and Jon Rahm share the lead at the BMW PGA Championship after the second round at Wentworth on Friday after Englishman Willett hit a superb 65 on the West Course to join Rahm on 11 under par.

Spain's Rahm meanwhile made an eagle on the 18th to add a 67 to his opening round of 66.

World number four Justin Rose, shrugging off a knee injury suffered on his manager's stag party, moved two shots off the lead alongside Henrik Stenson and Christiaan Bezuidenhout.

Rory McIlroy made the cut on the number after a round of 69.

After missing the cut at Wentworth last May, Willett was ranked 462nd in the world.

But he finished the year in style by winning the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, his first victory since the 2016 Masters and has now risen to world number 60.

"It's now enjoyable to be playing it and feeling good about yourself," said Willett.

Rahm started slowly and bogeyed the first two holes, but the Spaniard birdied the next four before dropping another shot on the 10th.

The Ryder Cup winner regrouped again to birdie the 12th and 13th, before hitting a superb approach to the last with a four iron from 212 yards to set up an eagle from six feet.

"I didn't lose patience or panic, because I know I have the whole round to go and I have the whole day to make it up," said world number six Rahm.

McIlroy had fallen apart on the back nine on Thursday with four bogeys and a double-bogey in a 76, but he battled back in his second round.

The four-time major winner was still two shots below the cut line with five holes to play, but found a birdie on the 14th and chipped in for another on the 16th.

McIlroy made a six-foot par putt on the last green to secure his place for the weekend, although sits 12 strokes behind the leaders on one-over.

"Plus one, obviously the leaders are way up there, but the conditions are going to be tricky," McIlroy said.

"The course is getting firm. If I can shoot seven-under tomorrow, get myself to minus six, you never know... I went low on this golf course before, so I feel like I can do that."

A strong leaderboard features American Tony Finau on six-under, alongside Norwegian rising star Viktor Hovland and one stroke ahead of defending champion Francesco Molinari.