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Casey steps up bid for Abu Dhabi repeat

  • Story Highlights
  • Graeme Storm of England and Australia's Richard Green lead in Abu Dhabi
  • 2007 champion Paul Casey shares second place just one shot behind
  • Three-time major winner Padraig Harrington cards a 66 with two closing birdies
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(CNN) -- England's Paul Casey charged into contention in the storm-hit Abu Dhabi Championship as he bids for his first victory since the same tournament two years ago.

Casey again showed his liking for the Abu Dhabi course with a sparkling 65.

Casey again showed his liking for the Abu Dhabi course with a sparkling 65.

Newly-wed Casey fired a second round seven-under 65 to share second place on 10-under with fellow countryman Anthony Wall.

Another Englishman, Graeme Storm, had the low round of the day, a brilliant 64, to share the lead with Richard Green of Australia at 11-under.

Casey, a wild card pick for the European Ryder Cup team at Valhalla, suffered a loss of form in 2008 and has slipped outside of the world top 40.

He told Press Association that he had concentrated on the majors to the detriment of regular tour events.

"My brain was very much geared toward what's coming up in two weeks' time or what happened last week. "It's a learning process, but I can't take too long," said the 31-year-old who tied the knot with American Jocelyn Hefner -- a cousin of Playboy founder Hugh -- last month.

Three-time major winner Padraig Harrington rushed through his final holes in deteriorating conditions and birdied the 17th and 18th for a 66 to be in contention on seven-under.

Colin Montgomerie, at the center of media speculation that he may become the next European Ryder Cup captain, also improved with a second round five-under 67 to take closer order.

But U.S. Masters champion Trevor Immelman of South African and Spain's Sergio Garcia are off the pace on three-under.

Garcia drove into the water at the last, the same fate as playing partner Casey which cost him a share of the lead with Storm and Green.

Northern Irish hope Rory McIlroy, just 19 years of age, provided the early headlines and despite faltering on the back nine is still just two off the pace on nine-under as he chases a first European Tour victory.

In other golf action on Friday, former U.S. Open champion Angel Cabrera continued to lead the way at the Africa Open in South Africa after a second round four-under-par 68.

The Argentinian followed up yesterday's opening 62 to top the leaderboard, two shots ahead of Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke, who has carded 67 and 65.

Another former U.S. Open winner, Retief Goosen, is six shots back after a two-under 70 followed a 66 at the East London Golf Club.

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