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Lawrie puts down marker at Qatar Masters

updated 11:24 AM EST, Sat February 4, 2012
Things are looking up for Scotland's Paul Lawrie after a second-round 67 secured the lead at the Qatar Masters in Doha.
Things are looking up for Scotland's Paul Lawrie after a second-round 67 secured the lead at the Qatar Masters in Doha.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Former Open champion holds a one-shot lead over Belgium's Nicolas Colsaerts
  • Lawrie fires a five-under par 67 despite incurring a penalty stroke for dropping marker
  • America's John Daly currently in a ten-way tie for seventh on three-under par, five behind Lawrie

(CNN) -- Scotland's Paul Lawrie will take a one-stroke lead into the final round of the Qatar Masters after posting a second round 67 at Doha Golf Club.

The 43-year-old fired six birdies on Saturday in the event reduced to 54 holes because of strong winds to finish on eight-under par one shot ahead of Begium's Nicolas Colsaerts who posted a four-under par round of 68.

Daly on top as winds strike

Lawrie's lead could have been bigger had it not been for a bogey at the third hole and a one-stroke penalty picked up at the par five 10th after he dropped his ball on his marker -- a mistake he also made last week in Abu Dhabi.

"I'd never done it in my life - 20 years on Tour - but last week in Abu Dhabi I was lucky because my caddie saw it and said the marker never moved," Lawrie said, EuorpeanTour.com reported.

"This time I wasn't sure and (senior referee) Andy McFee said I had to be 100% sure," Lawrie added, AFP reported.

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The penalty meant he walked off the green with a par instead of a birdie four, but he repaired the damage with a birdie at the next and two more at the 16th and 18th holes to edge ahead of the pack.

Sweden's Peter Hanson (69) and Argentina's Ricardo Gonzalez (67) are two strokes back on six-under par.

One shot behind them are South African James Kingston (69) and England's Simon Khan (68) while a group of players including American John Daly, Australia's Jason Day and Spain's Sergio Garcia are locked in a tie for seventh on four-under par.

Nine players, including England's Lee Westwood (70), Germany's Martin Kaymer and Ryder Cup captain Jose Maria Olazabal, are currently three-under par.

Several notable names didn't make the cut (which came at one-over par) including South Korea's K J Choi (78), American Hunter Mahan (75) and Swede's Robert Karlsson (78) and Henrik Stenson, who followed up his opening round of 82 with a 74 to finish on 12-over par.

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