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Rory McIlroy needs to find top form to put pressure on the leaders

By Adam McKendry

It was a day of mixed fortunes for Rory McIlroy who would have been delighted with his first round score at the BMW Championship but less enthused with his second after he finished at four under par.

Following a rain delay on Thursday afternoon in Indiana, McIlroy was left to finish his first round yesterday morning, carding a respectable four under par round of 68.

However, the new World No.3 faltered in his second round, racing away to six under par through his first seven holes, but then failed to gather any momentum on the back nine, carding three bogeys and a birdie to finish back where he started.

It means McIlroy, who is looking to back up last week's remarkable win at the Deutsche Bank Championship with another victory here, is 10 shots off leaders Roberto Castro and Dustin Johnson.

The Holywood golfer will be hoping to move his way up the leaderboard at the weekend, like he did in Boston last week, and at the very least consolidate his position in the FedEx Cup standings.

Fellow Ulsterman Graeme McDowell also has a keen interest this week as he looks to break into the top 30 of the FedEx Cup rankings which would grant him an invite to the season-ending TOUR Championship.

G-Mac also sits on four under par, which is currently a tie for 19th, however as it stands that wouldn't be enough to send the Portrush man to Atlanta.

But the 37-year-old will be confident that he can be a surprise heading into the weekend after a confidence-boosting five under par second round of 67.

McDowell bogeyed the third hole, but that was the only blemish on his card as he went on to make six birdies, including three in his last four holes.

Not making the TOUR Championship would be another disappointment for McDowell, who also failed to make Darren Clarke's Ryder Cup squad for Hazeltine at the end of the month.

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