Overnight leader Richard Sterne made a birdie on the 18th hole Friday to take a one-shot lead over Thorbjorn Olesen and two others after the second round of the Dubai Desert Classic.
Sterne, a South African who has struggled with injuries, finished with a 2-under 70 and 12-under 132 total. Olesen (66), Tommy Fleetwood (68) and Stephen Gallacher (70) were a shot back.
Chris Doak (69), Andreas Harto (67) and Maximilian Kieffer (68) were two shots off the pace.
Sergio Garcia (67) was three strokes back despite struggling with shoulder problems that required treatment midway through his round.
Lee Westwood, ranked No. 8 in the world, shot a 71 to trail by six shots, while two-time major winner Mark O'Meara (74) is just under the projected cut at 2 under.