By Mark Lamport-Stokes
ATLANTA (Reuters) - A bizarre bounce of his ball into a spectator's pocket and a birdie-birdie finish helped Rory McIlroy surge into contention for the Tour Championship with a sizzling display in the second round on Friday.
The Northern Irish world number one, hunting his fourth PGA Tour victory of the year, fired a five-under-par 65 on a steamy day at East Lake Golf Club to finish at six under, a stroke off the early lead in the final playoff event.
After sinking a nine-foot birdie putt at the 12th, McIlroy did well to par the 14th after his tee shot sailed into trees before the ricocheting ball ended up in the right-hand pocket of a spectator's shorts.
He then stunningly moved into a brief share of the lead with a birdie-birdie finish, sinking a 20-footer at the 17th before coaxing in a curling 27-footer at the uphill par-three last.
(Editing by Gene Cherry)