After the second round of play at the European Tour's final event of the 2012 season, three players are knotted atop the leaderboard.
Two, we expected. But Marc Warren, who hasn't had a win since 2007, is sitting right there with Luke Donald and Rory McIlroy.
The next 10 players on the board are tied at -8.
While McIlroy and Donald have each ripped off lengthy birdie clusters, the unquestioned highlight of the tournament thus far is this (un-embeddable) video of the top 12 players in the Race to Dubai trying to remember the words to "The 12 Days of Christmas." The clip is worthy of the glory days of "Late Night with David Letterman."
Outside that, McIlroy overcame what he thinks was a case of mild sunstroke at the end of Round 1 and played extremely well, though it seems more of an effort than we are used to from the player who has already wrapped up the money title on the European Tour. He may be worn out at the end of the season, but it isn't showing in his play.
Donald put his approach shot on No. 18 within a foot of the cup and dropped the birdie putt for a 68 on the round and a lot of momentum heading into Round 3. The No. 2-ranked Donald is not giving McIlroy any breathing room right now.
What To Watch For:
Sergio Garcia tied the course record by shooting a second-round 64. Had he not shot 73 on Day 1, he would be right there with McIlroy, Donald and Warren. This is Sergio's first event since laser eye surgery a month ago, so there is obviously going to be an adjustment period. If his adjustments resulting from the improved vision are worth a few strokes' improvement in play, Sergio will be making some noise on this side of the pond this year.
Donald and McIlroy are giving the tournament, the sponsors, the Golf Channel and the fans exactly what they want: a weekend matchup of the two top-ranked players on the Euro Tour. The duel should be riveting, since the two will not only be competing on the same course, but going head-to-head as a pair—at least in Round 3.