MARTIN Kaymer is beginning to look invincible in Abu Dhabi.
It certainly appeared that way yesterday as the German ploughed through a rainstorm, sinking putts from every length and angle on his way to a superb second round 65.
US PGA champion Kaymer tore up the greens as he surged into the weekend three strokes clear of Charl Schwartzel at the top of the leaderboard.
Yet Kaymer's Ryder Cup team-mate Graeme McDowell is still nicely placed and playing well enough to deny the defending Abu Dhabi champion his third HSBC title in four years.
It's a measure of US Open champion McDowell's confidence that he was able to bounce back from bogeys on his opening two holes yesterday and efficiently compile a two-under 70 to move into third place, just four behind Kaymer.
Two other Ulstermen, Rory McIlroy and Gareth Maybin, are in a four-way tie for seventh on six-under, six off the lead.
The deluge played into the hands of McIlroy, as it made the course play longer. He polished off a few chances on the greens during a round of 67, an effort impressively matched by Maybin.
Damien McGrane was the only other Irishman to make the cut, finishing on level par after a second round of 73.