Garcia claims lead as Dubai Classic completes second round

Sergio Garcia took a three-shot lead halfway through the Dubai Desert Classic when the second round was completed on Saturday.

Garcia, the world No. 15, added a 5-under-par 67 to the 65 he shot on Thursday to reach 12 under. Nacho Elvira shot a 68 to move into second place with a 9-under-par 135.

Henrik Stenson, the reigning British Open champion and European No. 1, moved into contention by shooting a 68 and finishing with three consecutive birdies. That left him tied with South Africa's George Coetzee, who made a double bogey on his final hole for a 70.

The weather conditions were perfect Saturday morning after wind gusts reaching 36 mph uprooted trees and moved balls on the greens, forcing the European Tour to suspend play.

The cut was made at 145, one stroke over par.

Tiger Woods, the former world No. 1, was part of the tournament but was forced to withdraw Friday before starting his second round because of back spasms.

Players, grouped in threes, started their third round at 12:10 p.m. local time from both tees.