Major champions Graeme McDowell and Danny Willett share second place at the halfway stage of the Italian Open.
Northern Ireland's McDowell, the 2010 US Open champion, had a bogey-free round for his second successive five-under-par 66.
Willett, who has not won since his 2016 Masters triumph, is yet to drop a shot in the tournament and added a 67 to his opening 65.
German Martin Kaymer leads by one on 11 under par after he carded a 63.
McDowell's back-to-back rounds of five-under-par were his best opening two rounds at a tournament in three years.
The performance comes after he was announced as Ryder Cup vice-captain in May.
Ireland's Padraig Harrington, meanwhile, shot five birdies on his way to a round of 66 and sits six shots behind the leaders.
Race to Dubai winner Tommy Fleetwood bogeyed the final hole and is four shots back in a tie for 17th.
Ross Fisher (-3) and Tyrrell Hatton (-1) were among those to miss the cut, which came at four under.