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Focused McIlroy in touch with Shanghai leader Hanson

by
Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland waits on the 15th green to putt his ball during the final round of the PGA Championship golf tournament in
Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland waits on the 15th green to putt his ball during the final round of the PGA Championship golf tournament in

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - World number one Rory McIlroy shut out noisy distractions to move to within two shots of leader Peter Hanson on day two of the BMW Masters golf on Friday.

Despite constant sounds of nearby building construction, sirens and even fireworks, along with the distraction of on-course mobile phones, McIlroy did not drop a shot in a round of seven-under-par 65 to move into second place on 12 under par.

Sweden's Hanson, McIlroy's double-winning Ryder Cup team mate, posted an eight-under par 64 to lead the $7-million event by two strokes on 14 under par on the Lake Malaren course.

Hanson started his round with a first-hole bogey before getting eight birdies in 16 holes.

"It's amazing how many good rounds come together after a bogey on the first," he told reporters. "After starting with a bogey I got it straight back with a birdie on three."

Hanson, the world number 25, captured a fifth European Tour victory a fortnight before the Ryder Cup in winning the KLM Open at Hilversum.

"I've been fighting really hard with my game after the Ryder Cup to get back the motivation because it is hard after such a big week and you prepare for so long to try and qualify for the team," Hanson, 35, added.

"I've got four events left this year, three on the European Tour and the Nedbank Challenge (South Africa), so I've set some high goals and I want to finish the year as strongly as possible.

"If I can get away with a big win one of these four weeks I would be very, very happy taking a break for Christmas."

Hanson, however, will have to fend off McIlroy over the closing two rounds. Last year, the Briton captured the Shanghai Masters exhibition match on the same course and he has won four times this season, including a second Major Championship title.

"The more you put yourself in this position, the more comfortable you become with it," McIlroy told reporters. "I like the fact that most weeks I tee it up, I can get myself in contention."

Sweden's Robert Karlsson shot a 64 to move into third place on nine under par.

(Editing by Clare Fallon)

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