Molinari stays in front, leads by 1 at BMW PGA


The field at the BMW PGA Championship faced a stern test for the second consecutive day, but Franceso Molinari was able to retain his advantage. Here's how things look heading into the weekend at Wentworth, where Molinari leads by a shot:

Leaderboard: Francesco Molinari (-10), Byeong-Hun An (-9), Emiliano Grillo (-8), Thongchai Jaidee (-8), James Morrison (-7), Miguel Angel Jimenez (-6), Robert Karlsson

What it means: Molinari was a runner-up last week in Spain and has cracked the top 10 each of the last three years at Wentworth, where he clearly feels comfortable. The Italian began the day with a two-shot lead, and after a 3-under 69 he holds the top spot at the halfway point as he looks to win for the first time since 2012.

Round of the day: An is a relative unknown on the European Tour, but the Korean has top-15 finishes in each of his last two starts and appears in position for a third after an 8-under 64. An opened with a par and then reeled off four straight birdies on Nos. 2-6, and the 23-year-old made it around Wentworth without dropping a shot.

Best of the rest: Graeme Storm appeared to be headed for an early exit after an opening 78, but the Englishman rallied in style to post a 64 and easily make the cut. Storm had six straight birdies from Nos. 9-14 and made six back-nine birdies en route to an inward half of 31.

Biggest disappointment: Defending champ Rory McIlroy finally ran out of steam, posting a 6-over 78 to miss the cut by several shots. McIlroy never got things going Friday and carded a 41 on the back nine, missing the cut just days after lapping the field at Quail Hollow.

Main storyline heading into Saturday: The player to watch remains Molinari, who has some experience in the lead and counts a WGC victory among his trophy collection. The Italian is looking to lock up spots in each of the next two majors, and a victory at Wentworth would punch his ticket to all of this summer's biggest events.

Shot of the day: Jamie Donaldson was stuck behind a tree on the par-4 11th, but the Welshman found a 1-foot gap in the limbs and hit his approach shot through it, over water and onto the green. While he went on to three-putt for bogey, Donaldson still made the cut after rounds of 70 and 73.

Quote of the day: "It was inevitable that a good run was going to come to an end." - McIlroy