M2M Russian Open: Rikard Karlberg claimed the outright lead at the halfway stage
Last Updated: 27/07/13 12:06pm
Rikard Karlberg fired a second round 68 to earn a two-shot halfway lead at the M2M Russian Open on the outskirts of Moscow.
Karlberg had shared the overnight lead and, starting from the 10th, reeled off four birdies in his first six holes to burst out of the pack.
Second round Leaderboard:
(GB & Ire unless stated)
-9 R Karlberg (Swe)
-7 W-C Liang (Chn)
-7 M Hoey
-7 M Baldwin
-7 A Kaleka (Fra)
-6 M Foster
Click here for collated scores
Bogeys at the 18th and fifth saw him drop back but he returned to the top of the leaderboard after getting both shots back at the sixth and eighth.
Karlberg, seeking his first win on the European Tour, told www.europeantour.com: "It was a pretty tough day out there because the wind got really strong in the middle of the round and caused quite a few problems.
"But I made a really good start to the round and then when the conditions got worse I managed to hang in there and then had a great finish with two birdies in my last few holes which is very satisfying obviously.
"I am in a great position right now but there is still a long way to go. We are only at the halfway stage and I need to keep doing what I have been doing and making birdies to have a chance.
"I am looking forward to the weekend - this is why we play the game; to get ourselves into these positions so hopefully I can keep playing well and make another good score tomorrow and we will go from there."
England's Mark Foster eagled the eighth - his 17th - to post a second successive 69 and establish the clubhouse lead on six under par.
However, Northern Ireland's Michael Hoey and Alexandre Kaleka of France shot 67s to go one better and they were joined two off the lead by Mathew Baldwin and China's Liang Wen-chong.
It was a disappointing day for joint first round leader Simon Dyson, who had to settle for a two-over 74.
The Yorkshireman's round took a hit when he ran up a seven at the 17th - his eighth - and followed it with a bogey, but he recorded level par for his back nine to remain on the fringes of contention, albeit six shots off the pace.