Westwood overcomes a bout of wind

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Worksop’s Lee Westwood returned to some of his best form when the Commercialbank Qatar Masters was finally able to get going again.

Strong winds allowed less than three hours’ play yesterday and caused the second leg of the European Tour’s Middle East swing to be cut to 54 holes.

It was more of a sprint than a marathon therefore and Westwood was fast off the blocks as he resumed his second round.

The world number three birdied the 16th - his seventh hole - two-putted the long 18th for another and then began the front nine with an 18-foot eagle putt.

He was up to three under par and that was good enough for a share of third place when Spain’s Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano, leader after his opening 66, followed two bogeys yesterday with another at the short third.

American John Daly led at five under. The 45-year-old now ranked 543rd in the world was one in front of Korean KJ Choi, but both had yet to start their second rounds.

Westwood and Fernandez-Castano were part of a group two behind that also included England’s David Lynn and Richard Finch, Scot Paul Lawrie and Australian Jason Day, whose first dropped shot of the week came when he three-putted the 17th.

On the same mark was South African Branden Grace, twice a winner already this season and heading for the low score of the second round as he improved from three over to three under with seven to play.