Justin Rose follows his opening-round 65 with a solid 72 to maintain the lead going into the weekend, as defending champion Dustin Johnson misses the cut

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Justin Rose Maintains His Masters Lead As Dustin Johnson Misses The Cut

Justin Rose maintained his Masters‘ lead after a battling performance on Friday, but the challengers are clustered in behind the Englishman at the halfway stage.

After surging to the top of the leaderboard with a stunning 65 on the opening day, the two-time Masters runner-up was three over for his round at the turn – but he showed his class with three birdies in the last six holes to get back to seven under.

Rose Keeps His Calm

Justin Rose Maintains His Masters Lead

Justin Rose maintains his Masters lead after recovering from a poor start [Getty Images]

The former US Open champion summarised it as “an honourable draw.”

“I was joking that the finger was heading towards the panic button a little bit,” Rose said.

“I had a little talk with myself on 8 and said, ‘You’re still leading the Masters,’ and I just changed my mindset a little bit and started to play match play against the golf course.

“I scratched a line on my scorecard and told myself I was three down and could I go ahead and beat the golf course from that point?

“I had a putt on 18 to win my match, 1-up, but unfortunately it just slipped by.”

It was always going to be difficult to follow Thursday’s fireworks, but Rose will be very pleased with how he responded.

However, his lead is just one.

Related: Masters Leaderboard

Will Zalatoris is clearly enjoying his first competitive start at Augusta National.

The 24-year-old carded a 68, and he shares second place on six under with fellow American, Brian Harman.

Meanwhile, Australia’s Marc Leishman sits a shot further back in a tie for fourth alongside Jordan Spieth.

Spieth On The Move

Having returned to the winner’s circle last week after a lengthy barren spell, few would bet against Spieth claiming a second Green Jacket.

The three-time Major champion was back somewhere near his best on Friday, especially with the putter – and he has that look in his eye again.

Justin Rose Maintains His Masters Lead

Jordan Spieth is right in the hunt for a second Green Jacket [Getty Images]

The only blemish came at the par-3 12th, a hole which has left a few scars in the past.

However, birdies followed at the two par 5s, before he drained a 30-footer on 17 – and a 68 leaves him nicely placed at the halfway stage.

So too is his good friend, Justin Thomas.

The Players champion skipped round Amen Corner in three under en route to a second-round 67, a score matched by a certain Bryson DeChambeau.

Bryson Bounces Back

Justin Rose Maintains His Masters Lead

Bryson DeChambeau had more to smile about on day two [Getty Images]

The big-hitting American was in no mood to have a weekend off – and the US Open stormed back into contention.

After yesterday’s 76, he looked to have played his way out of the tournament, but courtesy of four birdies in the last six holes he’s now right back in the mix at one under.

DJ And Rory Miss The Cut

Rose won’t have to worry about being chased down by the defending champion, Dustin Johnson.

What a difference five months makes – or 145 days to be precise.

The world number one needed to birdie the last, but he found the fairway bunker off the tee and couldn’t produce a final piece of magic.

Related: What Is The Cut At The Masters?

For Rory McIlroy, meanwhile, it’s a case of back to the drawing board.

We’ve become used to seeing the Ulsterman fight back after a poor opening round, but he’s clearly lacking confidence right now.

The four-time Major winner never looked comfortable, and a missed cut always looked on the cards.

Rory McIlroy

Rory McIlroy struggled again in round two [Getty Images]

Lee Westwood, who’s been enjoying a late-career resurgence, will also have a weekend off, as will four-time Major winner, Brooks Koepka.