(CNN) -- Tiger Woods is on course for an incredible 17th individual World Golf Championship title in 34 attempts after claiming a share of the halfway lead at the HSBC Champions in Shanghai.
Woods carded a second consecutive five-under-par 67 to join overnight leader Nick Watney (70) on 10-under-par, with world number two Phil Mickelson returning a 66 to lie a shot behind alongside compatriot Ryan Moore and Spain's Alvaro Quiros.
After being disappointed with his first round, Woods made his move on the back nine of his second.
The world number one birdied the 11th and 13th, chipped in for another birdie on the 16th and rounded off an inward nine of 32 with a birdie on the par-five 18th.
"I got off to a good start and birdied the very first hole but, after that, I didn't really make any putts," Woods told reporters.
"I certainly had some looks at them and didn't really capitalise on anything but made a putt at nine and from then on I hit a lot of good putts and played the last 10 holes in five-under.
"It was a little bit frustrating not holing the putts, but the guys weren't really running off and hiding and I knew that if I could play the back nine in three-under that would be a pretty good number and I was able to do one better than that."
Quiros was the only European player inside the top 10 after adding a 66 to his opening 69.
Since posting a thrilling win in Qatar at the start of the year, which pushed the 26-year-old into the world's top 30, Quiros has struggled to recapture that form, with only a second place at May's European Open to show for his efforts.
He has now slipped outside of the top 50 after missing the cut in Singapore last week, but a continued strong showing would soon change that and improve his 20th place in the Race to Dubai with just two events remaining after this week.
Anthony Kim lies sixth on eight-under with Pat Perez a further shot back and Brian Gay on six-under with India's Jyoti Randhawa -- the only other non-American inside the top eight.
Paul Casey, still battling the rib injury which sidelined him for three months, Volvo World Match Play Championship winner Ross Fisher and Martin Kaymer, who is still struggling with a foot injury, sit on four-under.
Rory McIlroy, Lee Westwood and Singapore Open champion Ian Poulter are a further shot off the pace heading into the weekend.