Rory McIlroy shot a second successive 67 in Turkey on Friday to stay in touch with leader Jaco van Zyl.
The world number three trails the South African by four shots heading into the weekend at the Turkish Airlines Open, the opening event of the European Tour's lucrative four-week long Final Series.
McIlroy was bogey-free for the second day in a row, and while he was as much as 10 shots off the lead at one point in his round, a hat-trick of birdies from the 11th, coupled with a few bogeys from the leader, changed the complexion of the tournament late in the day.
McIlroy did enjoy some good fortune during his round, hitting a tree on the fourth that prevented him finding the water and escaping with a par on the 18th after being forced to take a penalty drop when he put his tee shot into a bush.
"It was good, but I felt it could have been a bit better, not taking advantage of some of the chances coming in was a bit frustrating," McIlroy said. "I was giving myself some chances, but I did not hit wedges close enough to give myself a look at birdies.
"I looked at the leaderboard on the fourth hole and I was 10 shots back, so to go from 10 shots back to four shots back is not that bad.
"It could have been better, but I am within touching distance."
McIlroy is confident he can do a lot more over the weekend.
“The good thing is I feel like I have left it out there, I definitely feel like there’s a lot more to come. I feel like I can hit the ball a little better. I can definitely get my wedges closer and, if I get my wedges closer, I’ll give myself putts for birdies,” he added.
The Dutchman finished third and second in the first two weeks of the home-based competition.
NFL stars Tom Brady and Peyton Manning will also be involved.
The US President was among the viewers watching the TaylorMade Driving Relief.
The US President phoned in as McIlroy played in a Sunday fundraiser for coronavirus victims.
Syme donated his prize money to charity.
‘This is the life of a caddie…’
The Northern Irishman is ranked number one in the world.
Players entering the United States will face a 14-day quarantine period, while a strict testing regime will be in place at each tournament.
The experienced duo will be involved at Whistling Straits.
The world number 98 intends to split the 10,000 euros prize money between his own charity and a hospital in his native Rotterdam.