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Tiger Woods cruises into solo lead while Rory McIlroy surges through the pack at Zozo Championship in Japan

Tiger Woods is two shots clear at the midway point of the Zozo Championship.
Tiger Woods is two shots clear at the midway point of the Zozo Championship.
Gareth Hanna

By Gareth Hanna

Tiger Woods holds the solo lead at the halfway stage of the Zozo Championship as he targets a record-equalling 82nd PGA Tour title.

The 15-time major winner recorded a six-under-par 64 in Saturday's delayed second round in Japan to take the outright lead ahead of fellow American Gary Woodland.

Woods is 12 under par for the week, two clear of Woodland and four ahead of home favourite Hideki Matsuyama and Keegan Bradley.

Victory in the tournament, which will finish on Monday after Friday's play was washed out at the Narashino Country Club, will see Woods match Sam Snead's PGA record.

Rory McIlroy made headway in his own second round, rattling through the field into a tie for 21st via a five under par 65, much improved on Thursday's opening 72.

It was enough to take the Holywood star to three under par for the week but it was also a round that promised even more, with McIlroy six under par for the day after his opening 11 holes.

Starting on the tenth, he began with eagle at the much-shortened 10th hole, which at under 140 yards due to the conditions, was a par four only in name.

He backed it up with four more birdies during a comfortable run but hit the breaks on his closing stretch and finished off with a disappointing bogey five.

Woods had no such issues, finishing strong as he came back in only 31 shots with five birdies on the closing nine.

His only drop-shot of the day arrived at the second with a uncharacteristic missed putt.

It was, nonetheless, the only blemish on an otherwise impressive card from the Masters champion.

He will play alongside Woodland and Matsuyama in a fan-favourite final group for the third and fourth rounds.

The field is set to play more than 18 holes on Sunday, maintaining the same three-man groups for the final round, as the organisers look to finish play as early as possible on Monday for players making their way to next week's Bermuda Championship.

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