McIlroy, Day try to make up ground, make cut at US Open

Willett, who pulled out before the start of his second round, was heading towards the Erin Hills exit anyway after slumping to an opening round nine-over 81. "I did the work, looked at the golf course, made sure that I could actually play and visualize the golf course", he said.

A day after Rickie Fowler's 7-under opening round, that same score is still leading but it's shared by four players - not including Fowler, who shot a 1-over 73 to sit one back.

Rory McIlroy will miss the cut, but at least one of his US Open records is safe - 35 consecutive holes without a bogey to start a US Open.

After bogeying three straight holes on his back nine, his first dropped shots of the tournament, Fowler limped into the clubhouse with a 73 to fall to six under for the tournament. The record for a lowest cut was 1-over 145 at Medinah in 1990.

Rory McIlroy is trying to make a run as he closes out his second round at the U.S Open.

Of the four, Fleetwood - who was ranked 188th in the world rankings as recently as last August, but now up to 32nd - is the only one never to have won in the United States.

The last six majors have crowned first-time champions and that trend looks poised to continue at Erin Hills where you have to look way down the leaderboard to 19th before finding a major victor in U.S. Masters champion Sergio Garcia of Spain.


Fowler, who drew a fortunate early tee time for round one, teed off at 7:51 a.m local time with Hideki Matsuyama and Jon Rahm. Combined with Fowler's 65 on Thursday, this marked the first time that three golfers had 7-under rounds in the same Open.

The competitive balance of the tournament should make up for the loss of star power, but left open is the question of why three of the biggest hitters in the game couldn't take advantage of the longest course in U.S. Open history. I birdied four of the last six - I probably could have birdied all of the last six.

Day and Scott missed the weekend together at a major championship for the first time in their careers, with only Marc Leishman (rounds of 68, 70) the only Aussie to secure a berth in the final two days at Wisconsin's Erin Hills. Just look at the hole location sheet for the day's play on Friday; nearly all of them are hidden away near the edge of greens. The defending champio Johnson made the turn at +3, but couldn't sink a birdie putt to save his life, making ten straight pars and finished in a tie for 102nd.

A rattled Casey immediately added another bogey to extend his miserable run before hitting the turbo-charger and firing off five consecutive birdies. A chip went sailing past the pin, leaving a long putt to save par which was duly missed. Reavie birdied five of his first seven holes, and eight in all Friday, to surge back into contention.

One shot back. Jamie Lovemark. At the end of the day, Paul Casey and Xander Schauffele carded six-under 66, just one off Fowler's torrid pace. You know, I've got four weeks off now.

Still to be determined is what kind of test Erin Hills can present the rest of the week, especially with more rain on the way Friday and Saturday afternoon. Two shots might separate the top 12 players - with just eight shots spread across the entire field - but the leaderboard is devoid of high-profile players and marquee names. There no longer is a 10-shot rule that would allow anyone within 10 shots of the lead to make the cut.


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