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Ilonen leads Irish Open by 2 shots

CORK, Ireland (AP) - Mikko Ilonen opened a two-stroke lead in the Irish Open, while Rory McIlroy missed the cut by a shot Friday at Fota Island.

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Ilonen had a 3-under 68 to reach 10 under. He opened with a course-record 64 on Thursday.

The 34-year-old Finn birdied his opening hole, followed with eight straight pars, then had four birdies and two bogeys on the back nine.

''I wanted to at least get to 10-under par and I did that,'' Ilonen said. ''It wasn't as easy today and I didn't hit the ball that well but I putted well and it was good enough.''

Northern Ireland's Graeme McDowell (66), England's Robert Rock (66) and France's Romain Wattel (65) were tied for second at 8 under, and three-time major champion Padraig Harrington (67) was 6 under.

The loss of McIlroy, from Northern Ireland, was a blow to event organizers. He followed his opening 74 with a 69 to miss the cut for the second straight year in the national open.

McIlroy had a double bogey on par-5 fourth after his tee shot clipped a tree and ricocheted out of bounds and over the fence into the adjoining Fota Island Wildlife Park.

''I'll be back next year and try and do better,'' McIlroy said.

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

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The Associated Press
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