Raphaël Jacquelin finished with back-to-back birdies at Kingsbarns to establish a one shot lead in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.

The Frenchman followed an opening round of 65 at Carnoustie with battling two under par 70 at Kingsbarns to move to eight under par for the tournament, before he completes the rotation of three Scottish links courses by playing St Andrews on Saturday.

Ireland’s Padraig Harrington (70), France’s Alexander Levy (68) and Englishman Oliver Wilson (72) are tied for second place on seven under par after also playing Kingsbarns, while Irishman Shane Lowry is the fourth player on that mark following a two under par round of 70 at St Andrews.

Ryder Cup player Stephen Gallacher is two shots off the pace after a round of 70 at Kingsbarns, while his teammate from Gleneagles, World Number One Rory McIlroy, moved up the leaderboard with a five under par round of 67 at the same venue.

McIlroy ignited his round with an eagle on the 16th hole – his seventh after starting on the tenth tee – and added five more birdies over the next 11 holes to move to four under par for the tournament, just four shots adrift of Jacquelin.

Key player quotes

Raphaël Jacquelin

“I’m pretty happy, especially the way I finished. I birdied 17 and 18, so it was good before having dinner and going for a rest. But not too happy with the game overall because of course, I didn’t play that well, not as well as yesterday.  It was not that easy, there was a bit of wind, a bit of rain, and it was a bit cold as well.  But I think the course was not playing as difficult as expected.

Padraig Harrington

“I really had a chance of stealing a march today.  I had three three‑putts that were kind of innocuous. I missed a few opportunities.  Today was a day where if things went right for me, I could have shot another 66, or 65 and that would have given me a nice little bit of a lead going into the weekend.”

Oliver Wilson

“This is a fantastic opportunity.  A good weekend now would change everything dramatically. It’ll be a big ask, but it’s doable.  I’m playing well enough to.  There’s no question that I’m definitely playing well enough to go out there and shoot two good scores over the weekend.  I’ve just got to go and do it.”

Shane Lowry

“The way I played, to shoot two‑under was quite good.  The forecast was pretty bad today and everyone was expecting the worst, but it wasn’t actually that bad.  It played quite easy toward the end and I could have picked up a couple more, but I’m happy with the position I’m in.”

Alexander Levy

“Victor Dubuisson was an inspiration for us French players last week and it would be nice if a few of us French players could get into the next Ryder Cup. I’m very happy with my two rounds, especially having no bogeys today in those conditions.”

Rory McIlroy

“I think the eagle on 16 today sort of kick started something for me.  I just went from there, and started to knock a few putts in.  I felt like I struck the ball pretty well for the first couple of days, but just to see a few putts roll in sort of gave me a little bit of confidence and played well after that.”

Complete second round scores

135 R Jacquelin (Fra) 65 70,

 136 A Levy (Fra) 68 68, S Lowry  (Irl) 66 70  P Harrington (Irl) 66 70 , O Wilson (Eng) 64 72 ,

 137 C Doak (Sco) 70 67, R Palmer (USA) 69 68 , R Ramsay  (Sco) 69 68

 138 G Bourdy (Fra) 67 71, F Aguilar (Chi) 71 67, G Coetzee (RSA) 71 67 S Gallacher (Sco) 68 70,

 139 C Wood  (Eng) 70 69 , B Stone (RSA) 72 67 , J McLeary  (Sco) 67 72 , H Otto (RSA) 69 70, R Gonzalez (Arg) 69 70 , R Green (Aus) 68 71 0, R Sterne  (RSA) 73 66 ,

 140 M Foster (Eng) 68 72 , G Storm  (Eng) 68 72 , R Karlsson (Swe) 72 68 , M Siem  (Ger) 69 71, S Hansen (Den) 72 68 , M Nixon (Eng) 70 70 , R McIlroy  (Nir) 73 67 , V Dubuisson  (Fra) 71 69 0,

 141 T Olesen (Den) 71 70 , G Porteous (Eng) 74 67 , R Evans  (Eng) 67 74 , A Sullivan (Eng) 70 71 , N Dougherty  (Eng) 72 69 , E Molinari  (Ita) 73 68 , T Lawrence (RSA) 68 73 , T Aiken (RSA) 71 70 , A Hall (Aus) 71 70 , J Parry (Eng) 68 73 , B Grace  (RSA) 76 65 , P Lawrie (Sco) 69 72 ,

 142 P McGinley (Irl) 72 70 , M Hoey  (Nir) 72 70 , S Kapur (Ind) 70 72 , M Kieffer (Ger) 72 70 , L Bjerregaard  (Den) 74 68 , R Finch  (Eng) 72 70 , J Walters (RSA) 69 73 , R Bland (Eng) 71 71 , J Morrison  (Eng) 72 70 , S Jamieson  (Sco) 70 72, C Lee (Sco) 71 71 , S Khan (Eng) 71 71 , P Casey  (Eng) 69 73 , T Fleetwood  (Eng) 69 73 , P Uihlein  (USA) 73 69 , T Jaidee (Tha) 71 71 , D Howell (Eng) 70 72 , J Luiten (Ned) 72 70 , B Wiesberger  (Aut) 71 71 , A Otaegui  (Esp) 67 75 ,

 143 D Drysdale (Sco) 71 72 , R Wattel  (Fra) 72 71 , N Cullen (Aus) 73 70 , M Warren (Sco) 73 70 , R Rock (Eng) 67 76 , C Montgomerie  (Sco) 72 71 , T Fisher Jnr (RSA) 70 73 , O Fisher  (Eng) 74 69 , N Fasth (Swe) 72 71 N Elvira  (Esp) 71 72, A Wall (Eng) 73 70 , P Lawrie (Irl) 70 73 , R Derksen (Ned) 73 70 , B Koepka  (USA) 70 73 , A Cañizares  (Esp) 72 71 , M Crespi  (Ita) 73 70 , P Waring  (Eng) 71 72 , E De La Riva  (Esp) 67 76 , N Faldo (Eng) 71 72 ,

 144 M Carlsson  (Swe) 74 70 , J Scrivener (Aus) 72 72 , U Van Den Berg  (RSA) 71 73 , A Hansen (Den) 75 69 , D McKenzie (Aus) 70 74 , G Stal  (Fra) 69 75 , T Lewis (Eng) 71 73 , F Molinari (Ita) 74 70 , L Oosthuizen  (RSA) 70 74 , M Bremner (RSA) 73 71 , P Larrazábal (Esp) 71 73 , S Dyson  (Eng) 73 71 , F Zanotti (Par) 73 71 , D Willett  (Eng) 74 70 , S Hutsby  (Eng) 73 71 , J Dantorp (Swe) 72 72 , K Phelan (Irl) 73 71 , S Thornton (Irl) 73 71 ,

 145 A Saddier (Fra) 72 73 0, M Lampert (Ger) 72 73 0, D McGrane (Irl) 75 70 0, E Els (RSA) 71 74 0, J Carlsson (Swe) 71 74 0, M Anguiano (USA) 71 74 0, E Grillo (Arg) 72 73 0, J Quesne  (Fra) 72 73 0, G Havret  (Fra) 74 71 0, M Ilonen  (Fin) 74 71 0, N Holman  (Aus) 71 74 0, D Fichardt (RSA) 73 72 0, P Whiteford (Sco) 74 71 0,

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