Under the weather McIlroy 'struggling' in Singapore
Three rain delays are not the only thing world number one Rory McIlroy has had to contend with at the Barclays Singapore Open so far this week.
The Northern Ireland star, who this time last year had a bout of suspected Dengue fever, admits he is under the weather again after going down with what he described as “a cold or a sinus infection”.
McIlroy, close to clinching the double of European and US Tour money list titles, is one under par and five off the lead after 12 holes of his second round in an event which may be cut to 54 holes if there are any more hold-ups.
“I’m struggling a bit and not feeling 100 per cent,” he said. “Maybe it’s a good thing that the humidity is so high because I might be able to sweat it out.”
The tournament’s attempt to make up for time lost on the opening day was thwarted by more afternoon storms.
After completing a first-round 70, McIlroy was soon out on the course again and in danger of missing the halfway cut when he fell to two over par with an early bogey and double bogey.
Then came three birdies in four holes around the turn, the third of them following a near two-hour suspension, but after only one more shot it was back to the clubhouse.
England’s Simon Dyson, a four-time winner in Asia, and Thai golfer Chapchai Nirat top the leaderboard at six under par, although Dyson is about to drop his first stroke of the second round.
After four birdies in seven holes, the 34-year-old from York missed a par putt on the 474-yard fifth – his 14th – just as the siren sounded and his first shot in the morning will be to try to hole for bogey.
It would drop him alongside Dane Thomas Bjorn and Italians Francesco Molinari and Matteo Manassero. Bjorn is among half the field who have not played since Thursday morning.
Nirat, 631st in the world, started with a 65 to lead by one and then played the back nine in level par with two birdies and two bogeys.
He has not had a top-10 finish since February, but has tried to remain patient.
“I used to be very hot-tempered and got frustrated easily, especially at a young age,” said the 29-year-old, who turned professional at 15.
“My parents sent me to the monastery and I became a monk for a while. My temper is better now, but I still try to go back there once in a while.”
Dyson’s season has been disappointing too. A best of 10th when defending the Irish Open in July has meant a drop from 28th in the world to 63rd, and the target now is to climb back into the top 50 by the end of the year and so earn a third trip to the US Masters.
Molinari can go third on the European Order of Merit with a victory and might then be close enough to McIlroy to have a chance of catching him at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai in a fortnight.
But McIlroy still has his fate in his own hands – he defends the Hong Kong Open next week and none of his main challengers is playing there.
Phil Mickelson and Padraig Harrington were in the same position as Bjorn today, forced to find something else to do and kept waiting before resuming down on two over and three over respectively.
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