Published Friday, 17 January 2014
McIlroy hopes he can go on to win the competition. (© Getty)
The Holywood man recovered from a double-bogey on the sixth hole to record a five under par round of 67 in the desert.
Following McIlroy's opening round of 70, he is seven under par in the championship, two behind Scotland's Craig Lee and Spaniard Rafael Cabrera-Bello who share the lead on nine under par for the tournament.
McIlroy told European Tour TV: "I don't feel like I've struck the ball as well in a long time, but it has been gradually coming and I have been working hard on all aspects of the game.
"I came here excited for the season and I have a real chance for the weekend and I'm really happy about that."
Darren Clarke finished the round with a three under 69 to put him tied 43rd in the competition.
And Ballyclare's Garth Maybin also sits in 43rd position after carding a round of 70.
© UTV News