BMW Championship: Marc Leishman leads as Rory McIlroy slips off pace

Doug Mendoza
September 17, 2017

Day shot a hole-in-one on the par-three 17th on his way to a six-under 65, which has him tied with American Rickie Fowler for second spot.

"I'm pretty happy with backing up a 62 with a 64", said Leishman, who started the day with a two stroke lead.

But Friday under sunny skies at Conway Farms, the toothy grin returned after a hole-in-one on No. 17, and Day's easygoing nature was back in full swing.

Day actually has made three bogeys under ideal scoring conditions, but he has compensated with five birdies and an eagle in 14 holes.

"Seeing the last two days, I know I still have it in myself to be able to hit the correct shots and go out there and try and win", Day said.

To hear him talk of his wire-to-wire victory at the 2015 BMW Championship that took him to No. 1 in the world is to listen to someone describing an out-of-body experience. I don't tend to remember rounds of golf too often.

4 p.m.: Big par putt for Jason Day at No. 10 to stay T-2 at 15 under.

Leishman's resolute 69 lifted him to 19 under par
Leishman's resolute 69 lifted him to 19 under par

Because of Day's ace at the 17th, BMW will donate $US100,000 to the Evans Scholar foundation which provides college scholarships to caddies.

America's Patrick Cantlay is in fourth position at 10-under par after a 65, while Francesco Molinari (65) of Italy lies a shot further back at nine-under.

The 29-year-old came back from three bogeys to put in another spectacular performance with an eagle on the 14th, ending round two with a six-under 65. Defending champion: Dustin Johnson.

McIlroy said: "I've finished second three times, so perhaps this is the year I can go one better and end my season on a real high". He shot 69 and was at 7-under 135, in a tie for 12th.

The world number 22 has won twice on the PGA Tour, including the Arnold Palmer Invitational in Florida in March.

McIlroy won the Tour Championship previous year to scoop the lucrative FedEx Cup bonus, but world number two Jordan Spieth leads the rankings.

The 28-year-old Northern Irishman captured the FedEx Cup title last year - and its $10 million bonus jackpot - but is now projected to finish 60th unless he makes a big move over the final two round, estimating he needed "a couple of 65s" to make any impact.

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