After hanging around in the first round of the 2018 WGC-Mexico Championship, Shubhankar Sharma used the second round to grab control of the leaderboard and put himself in prime position as the weekend heats up at Chapultepec Golf Club in Mexico City.
"I worked all my life to come and play at a high stage like this".
Several of those big boys were lurking close, with Spanish duo of Sergio Garcia (65) and Rafa Cabrera Bello (67) in a share of second with American Xander Schauffele (68) on nine-under.
England's Chris Paisley was a shot off the lead overnight, but has dropped down the field after a four-over 75 to leave him in tied 29th on two under. "The little bogeys I made were three-putts".
A win or runner-up finish for the 25-year-old Greystones man would have pushed him into the the world's top 50 and sealed a spot at Augusta in April.
Paisley, 31, earned his first European Tour title at the BMW SA Open in January.
An 8.2 magnitude natural disaster struck Mexico City in September, with the area hit by another powerful quake in February.
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Sharma said the key to his good play had been adjusting to the yardage difference in play at the Club de Golf Chapultepec which is 7,500 feet above sea level.
Shubhankar Sharma made an eye-opening World Golf Championships debut as the Indian prospect carded a six-under-par 65 in the first round. I hit it into the bush and then hit it on the green, which is better get a five and walk away from there.
Hardly anyone knew much about Schauffele previous year before he played well at the U.S. Open, and then won the Greenbrier Classic and Tour Championship.
"Otherwise I just got the ball in play all day and it was great to finish with three birdies in a row", Sharma said. Obviously, the final destination for me is the PGA TOUR.
Schauffele, a two-time victor as a rookie past year on the PGA Tour, has managed to go bogey-free at Chapultepec over two rounds, remarkable because the poa greens following a week of rain have been bouncing more than rolling, especially in the afternoon.
"I haven't been consistent with my putting", Cabrera Bello said. "But I'm very happy with the way I've managed myself and just looking forward to the next two days".