England’s Nick Dougherty stormed into the lead in the second round of the New Zealand Open in Auckland.
Backing up a sound opening round of two-under, the 24-year-old fired five birdies in a near-perfect display on his way to carding a five-under 66.
Dougherty’s scintillating performance in benign conditions at the Gulf Harbour Country Club gave him a one-shot lead over first day front-runner Scott Strange.
After his late charge to take the clubhouse lead on four under yesterday, the Western Australian remains well-set in second place after carding two birdies through 11 holes.
Dougherty conceded there was still room for improvement in his game.
“I’ve got a little bit of work to do on my swing but all in all I am pretty pleased,” he said.
“I’ve enjoyed it and it’s been good.”
Europeans Andrew Raitt and Peter Lawrie, meanwhile, are among a field of six players tied for third on four-under.
After a level-par round during yesterday’s torrential weather, Raitt made the most of the improved conditions to card a blemish-free 67 for a four-under total.
Ireland’s Lawrie also turned around his mediocre start with a blistering display of five birdies to finish at five-under for the day and four-under for the tournament.
Other players lurking near the top of the leaderboard include Australians Greg Chalmers and Peter Senior on four under and England’s James Heath, on three under.