(Reuters) - Spain’s Sergio Garcia kept his cool amid multiple weather disruptions to take the clubhouse lead in the unfinished second round of the Iskandar Johor Open in Malaysia on Friday.
Garcia, ranked number 20 in the world, was nine-under through 12 holes in the season-ending $2 million event on the Asian Tour when play was called off for the final time.
Inclement weather forced two suspensions with almost three hours of play lost at the Horizon Hills Golf and Country Club, leaving 117 players to return on Saturday to resume their second round.
David Lipsky of the United States, who has yet to start his second round, shared the lead with Garcia after carding a nine-under 63 in the morning.
Spain’s victorious Ryder Cup member Garcia, who could play only three holes on the opening day, returned early on Friday to post a first round four-under 68.
“It was good. It has been a long day but it has been quite positive,” Garcia told reporters.
”I just hope I can keep going in the right direction and see what happens. Hopefully we will get lucky and can get all four rounds in.
“I did well before and after the breaks so overall it is what it is. You got to realize that the weather is like this and you got to deal with it.”
Three-times Asian Tour Order of Merit winner Thongchai Jaidee was six-under through 13 holes and led a pack of five players who are three strokes behind Garcia and Lipsky.
Multiple major winner and tournament draw card Ernie Els was four-under through 12 holes in the second round after carding a three-under 69 in the first.
Australia’s Marcus Fraser took a slight advantage in the Asian Tour Order of Merit race with a two-under-par 70 over playing partner and current leader Thaworn Wiratchant, who was a shot back.
Both players were yet to start their second round.
Writing by Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai; Editing by John Mehaffey