Justin Rose fought off swirling winds and the effects of hayfever to shoot a 3-under 68 at the Scottish Open and make headway on the leaders midway through the second round on Friday.
While playing partner Lee Westwood shot 73 to likely miss the cut at 3 over, Rose rolled in three birdies on the benign front nine and held on grimly coming back in to move to 5-under-par overall.
That put the 2013 U.S. Open champion two strokes behind overnight leader Rory McIlroy, who was among the afternoon starters at Royal Liverpool on 7 under.
Playing conditions appeared tougher than Thursday, with the back nine playing into a stiff wind. Only seven of the first 39 finishers on Friday broke 70, making it the ideal trial ahead of next week's British Open.