Robert MacIntyre takes halfway lead at European Open

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Scottish rookie Robert MacIntyre fired a bogey-free, 7-under-par 65 to take a four-stroke advantage after the second round of the European Open in Hamburg on Friday.

In a remarkable display of both driving and putting, MacIntyre carded seven birdies at Green Eagle Golf Course to move to 11-under overall heading into the weekend.

MacIntyre has enjoyed an impressive debut season, recording back-to-back runners-up finishes at the British Masters and the Made in Denmark in May before finishing in a tie for sixth at the 148th British Open.

“I just stuck to my game plan. It’s probably the best I’ve driven a ball — possibly this year. It’s not just going straight, it’s going miles,” the 23-year-old said.

“I don’t know what I’m doing but it’s working so I’m just going to try and continue to do it.”

“I can only control what I can control and that’s swinging the golf club for each individual shot. That’s all I’m going to do over the weekend as well and hopefully I can keep the good scores coming.”

Home favourite Bernd Ritthammer is second on 7-under after a spotless round of 66, while overnight leader Paul Casey and Matthias Schwab were two shots further behind at 5-under in a tie for third spot alongside Italian Guido Migliozzi.

England’s Casey followed up his opening-round 66 with a 1-over 73 as he was among the early starters who struggled to deal with cold and windy conditions.

After a mixed-bag opening-round 73, world number nine Xander Schauffele produced a much improved round of 69 and was nine shots behind MacIntyre.

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