Zurich Classic: Luke Donald shoots seven-under-par

Donald eyes world No 1 spot after stunning seven-under at Zurich Classic

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UPDATED:

07:56 GMT, 28 April 2012

Luke Donald's quest to regain the world No 1 spot was boosted by an impressive seven-under-par second round at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans.

The 34-year-old needs to finish in the top seven at Avondale to move back above Rory McIlroy and take the top ranking.

Luk at him go! Donald hits his tee shot on the 12th

Luk at him go! Donald hits his tee shot on the 12th

Zurich classic

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That looked unlikely after Donald fired a
one-over-par 73 on Thursday which left him eight shots adrift of the
leaders at the Louisiana venue.

Swing away: Jason Dufner tees off on the eighth hole and leads after two rounds

Swing away: Jason Dufner tees off on the eighth hole and leads after two rounds

However, he stormed back into
contention in the second round, kicking off with a birdie at his opening
hole – the 10th – before adding four further birdies and an eagle two
at the par-four first.

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The effort moved Donald to six under par, six shots off the lead, held by Jason Dufner.

Dufner, beaten in a play-off in last year's USPGA Championship, also managed a round of seven under par.

The American capped a bogey-free
round with an eagle on the par-five 18th to reach 12 under and establish
a one shot lead over Russell Knox, John Rollins and Ken Duke.

In the hole: Steve Stricker putts for a birdie on the ninth

In the hole: Steve Stricker putts for a birdie on the ninth

Knox, a 26-year-old who was born in
Inverness but now lives in Florida, followed his opening round 69 with a
64 which contained an eagle, seven birdies and a bogey.

A further shot back on 10 under were Greg Chalmers, who also fired a 64, Steve Stricker and Ernie Els.

Defending champion Bubba Watson had
his second straight 71 to make the cut by a stroke in his first
tournament since his Masters win, with Northern Ireland's Graeme
McDowell joining him on two under after a disappointing second round 73.

Brian Davis was alongside Donald on six under, while fellow Englishmen Greg Owen and Justin Rose were a further shot back.

However, a second round 69 was not enough to see Carshalton-born, Alabama-based Gary Christian make the cut.

Sneaking through: Bubba Watson only just made the cut

Sneaking through: Bubba Watson only just made the cut