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US Open golf 2023: second round – live updates | US Open

US Open golf 2023: second round – live updates | US Open
Key events

Cameron Smith has sneaked his way into the top 10. After signing for a 69 yesterday the Open champion dropped an early shot at the 11th having started his second round on the back nine. But he’s splashed red numbers on his card at the 12th, 13th and 15th to hit -3 for the week which is good enough for a share of sixth. He finished 4th in his US Open debut in 2015 but hadn’t carded a sub-70 score since then until yesterday.

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Another hole in one! We had two yesterday and the defending champion Matt Fitzpatrick makes another at the 115-yard par-three 15th. High drama at the US Open once again for the Sheffield golfer and he can’t wipe the smile off his face. He’s -2 for the round and now -1 for the week.

Updated at 12.54 EDT

We’ve got a new leader and something of a split at the top. Wyndham Clark’s wonderful run is maintained when he drains a birdie putt at the 7th. But dropped shots have left Brian Harman and Rory McIlroy, still in the top five, four back of the overnight leaders.

-9: W Clark (7)
-8: R Fowler, X Schauffele
-4: B Harman (4), R McIlroy (4)

A regression to mean for Harris English (see 17.22). His par putt at the 16th was 25-feet and he couldn’t keep up the run of saves – he missed it. He’s still -2 for the week and in a tie for 14th.

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Updated at 12.53 EDT

Charley Hoffman is on a roll. He started on the back nine and circled three birdies. He did drop a shot but he’s opened the front nine birdie-eagle to be -4 for the round and -3 for the week. It’s always one of my favourite oddities that this Californian PGA Tour veteran, and winner of four titles on the circuit, registered his first main tour top five finish in the 2002 Madeira Islands Open.

Brilliance from Wyndham Clark at the 14th and he joins the lead. Truly, he appeared to have no shot from short of the par-five green but he conjured magic with his lob wedge and drained the birdie putt that followed. I mentioned earlier his poor major championship form but his form this year has been excellent: eight top 20 finishes in his last nine starts including a first PGA Tour win. He is -2 for the round and -8 for the week.

Updated at 12.27 EDT

Harris English is level-par through six holes today but the American grinding. He’s holed out from 21 feet, twice from eight feet and again from five feet for pars. It’s either pure US Open or he’s about to stop standing tall in the face of golfing adversity. He’s -3 for the week in a tie for 6th.

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Here’s McIlroy’s birdie at the 12th. A lovely little hold of his position followed by a knee hitch/curtsey as it dropped. Classic McIlroy ticks and often a sign that he’s in the mood.

McIlroy is back on track. His approach at the 369-yard 12th leaves him a 32-foot curving putt for birdie. A two putt would be acceptable but it drops in the hole and the error at the 11th is forgiven.

Jordan Spieth is fighting to make the cut today after signing for a 72 yesterday. It’s far from the first time that he’s struggled with this championship in the first round. In fact, it was the 10th time in his 12 opening laps that he’s failed to break 72. His victory in 2014 and 17th in 2013 – his two best finishes in the event – both came off first round sub-70 scores. He’s opened Friday with a birdie and a bogey.

Leaderboard update

Brian Harman makes a birdie at the 12th to make up for a dropped shot at the 10th. McIlroy now four back of the lead but alone in fifth.

-8: R Fowler, X Schauffele
-7: W Clark (4)
-5: B Harman (3)
-4: R McIlroy (2)

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Video footage of DJ’s demise. The rough is not what we expect at a US Open – that tends to be long, flowing fescue or messy mops of bent grass. LA CC features Bermuda rough which doesn’t need to be as long to be difficult to escape from – the ball plops down to the bottom of the roots and the grass sits around it like grasping hands. (A decent bounce back from Johnson with a birdie at his next hole, by the way.)

McIlroy played a very fine recovery at the long par-three 11th. His ball was settled in the thick grass, his feet clinging to the top of the bunker’s edge. He thrashed through the grass and managed to find the putting surface but the 14-feet par putt swung across the front of the hole. He found 16 of his first 17 greens in regulation this week and has now missed 2 of his last 3.

20 minutes ago Dustin Johnson was two back of the US Open lead, now he’s seven adrift. He’s finally completed the par-four 2nd and it has almost certainly broken his championship challenge. He needed 9 (nine) shots and he is now one under for the week, nearer the cut line than the lead. The 2nd, by the way, is just the 8th most difficult hole on the course. Meanwhile, McIlroy’s tee shot at the 11th has found thick rough around a bunker – horribly reminiscent of the grass which tripped him up last night with a whiff.”

Ouch. Dustin Johnson is revealing how LA Country Club can bite. His drive at the 490-yard par-four 2nd finds the face of a bunker and he can only hack it up the hole into the thick Bermuda grass rough. From there he failed to get enough of the ball and it disappeared into the barranca (rugged ditch) short of the green. After a penalty drop his approach has finished over the green so he needs to chip in for a double bogey! Over on the back nine, McIlroy opens with a par.

Rory McIlroy opens his second round with a drive down the middle of the 10th fairway. Here’s a quirk of his recent Friday adventures in the US Open. Between 2016 and 2018 he always improved on his first round score in the second lap – but then he could hardly have failed to having never broken 77 on Thursday during that run. Since then though? Yesterday’s first round was a fifth straight time he ended Thursday within three shots of the leaders. In the first four of those efforts, he always needed more shots on Friday. You’d expect the same today but he needs to hang tough – two of those last four second rounds were 73+ which he surely cannot afford to repeat.

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A word about the yardages today. It’s common for players to stand aside at the green on a short par-four and allow the group behind to drive up; it helps the speed of play. It is, however, rarely seen on a par-three but that is exactly what is happening today on the par-three 11th because it is playing 297 yards. The par-three 7th? That’s 299 yards. And the par-four 6th? 315 yards. Dizzy stuff and typical of the designer George Thomas who liked yardages to be somewhat challenging and ambiguous.

Here’s a remarkable Dustin Johnson stat: his 64 in round one means he has drawn level with Tiger Woods for the most rounds of 65 or better in major championship history.

Dustin Johnson starts his second round from the quirky 1st tee (situated on the practice putting green). Meanwhile, Clark completed his birdie at his 1st and is now just one back of the leaders. Leading scores:

-8: R Fowler, X Schauffele
-7: W Clark (1)
-6: D Johnson
-5: B Harman, R McIlroy

They’re talking about the conditions in the Sky Sports commentary box – and they’re not convinced that it is going to be brutal today. They acknowledge that the pin positions are potentially difficult but, when tee shots avoid the rough, the greens are maybe not as fiery as we expected ahead of this week. Balls are holding the putting surfaces.

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David Howell emails: “At risk of making it incredibly obvious I’m a British Millennial, the USGA setups have often reminded me of that Dick and Dom feature where they dared to shout “Bogies!” at increasing volume in public places. If that’s the case, yesterday’s first round was like the time they did it in a library. Can’t wait to see the actual shouting begin today – many regular tournaments this year have felt more like a US Open than this actual US Open so far!” I mentioned this early yesterday – there are some conflicting reports but the general consensus is that the daily capacity is about 24,000 fans and as many as 20,000 are corporate tickets.

The first of the leaders is on the course. Wyndham Clark finds the middle of the fairway with his 318-yard drive at his first hole, the 10th. The winner of last month’s Wells Fargo Championship is playing his seventh major and he’s yet to end the week in the top 70. He looks set to end that trend after his superb 64 yesterday. His approach was very good too and has set up a 6-foot birdie putt.

Wyndham Clark is looking to keep climbing the leaderboard. Photograph: Matt York/AP

Updated at 11.54 EDT

History emphasises how important today’s action will be. There have been 23 US Opens in the 21st century and 21 of the eventual champions were tied sixth or better after 36 holes. One of the exceptions was last year’s winner Matt Fitzpatrick who was tied for 13th but only three shots back of the lead. There tends to be more significant movement on Friday in this championship than on the commonly accepted Moving Day (Saturday).

Spain’s Alejandro Del Rey has opened his second round with a par at the 10th, his first hole. Let’s have a reminder of his drive at the 315-yard par-four 6th yesterday – one of the highlights of Thursday’s action.

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The weather is set fair in Los Angeles today. Temperatures in the high 60s, maybe low 70s and nothing more than a 5-10 mph breeze. Rather like the UK right now actually. I spent my morning going for a run, among other exercisers, cooling down with an ice cream by the water’s edge, wondering how today’s golf might pan out. I’m actually in the English Midlands but it felt a touch Venice Beach-like.

The action has started, but so far none of the leaders are on the course. An early indication of the potential for big numbers has been revealed by the experience of Colombia’s Nico Echavarria at the 1st. As this tweet reveals, he unleashed a superb drive at the par-five. But then it all went horribly wrong and he walked off with a double bogey.

In need of a quick recap of yesterday’s low scoring? Here’s Ewan Murray’s report of the day when Rickie Fowler and Xander Schauffele laughed in the face of history.

As Ewan writes: “Jack Nicklaus never managed it. Neither did Tiger Woods. Arnold Palmer, Ben Hogan, Sam Snead, Seve Ballesteros … the list goes on.”

By my reckoning 14 of the 18 pins are within six yards of the edge of the putting surface. And there are some crackers in there too – look at the 12th! Standing around that hole, looking to tap the ball in, the players will have sand close by them on three different sides!

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How will the USGA achieve its aim of making life difficult for the field? Conditioning is one factor: let the fairways run faster and faster, don’t cut the rough and have the greens run rapid. The other key factor? It can cut fiendish pin positions. Have they done that? Simple answer: of course they have.

Good morning/afternoon everyone. A big day ahead of the field and an intriguing one too. As Dave mentioned in the preamble, there are expectations that the USGA will not have been too pleased to see so many low scores, not to mention that pair or record breaking efforts from Rickie Fowler and Xander Schauffele. In other words, we’re expecting the golf course to be full of bite in the second round. Strap in.

Preamble

David Tindall

Golf fans would have been forgiven for thinking they were looking at the John Deere Classic leaderboard when scrolling through the scores at Los Angeles Country Club on day one. Never has there been a score of 62 in the previous 122 US Opens but yesterday we saw two. First, Rickie Fowler wrote himself into the history books, not only claiming the US Open 18-hole record but matching the lowest round in major championship history: Branden Grace’s 62 at Royal Birkdale in the 2017 Open Championship. Lo and behold, just two groups later fellow American Xander Schauffele equalled it. Freaks? Two-offs? Weird outliers? Well, not quite as a birdie from Dustin Johnson at his final hole in the afternoon would have made it a trio of 62s. DJ made bogey to shoot 64.

You can bet your bottom dollar that the bods at the USGA won’t be allowing those types of scores today so expect tougher pins and higher scoring on day two. Par is just a number and all that but we can’t have a US Open being won with 20-under. This is meant to be all about grind and attrition, right. Here’s when and where Fowler, Scheffler et al tee off in Friday’s second round.

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Starting at hole one (all times BST)
(* denotes amateur)

14:45 R Fisher (Eng), N Echavarria (Col), P Haley II (US)
14:56 N Dunlap (US)*, N Hardy (US), S Stevens (US)
15:07 T Pendrith (Can), N Potgieter (SA)*, R Langasque (Fra)
15:18 A Puttnam (US), V Perez (Fra), A Ancer (Mex)
15:29 P Mickelson (US), P Harrington (Ire), K Bradley (US)
15:40 M Pereira (Chi), E Grillo (Arg), Fernandez de Oliveira (Arg)*
15:51 T Kim (Kor), S Theegala (US), C Young (US)
16:02 S Burns (US), D Johnson (US), K Mitchell (US)
16:13 T Finau (US), J Spieth (US), P Cantlay (US)
16:24 D Thompson (US), MW Lee (Aus), J Suh (US)
16:35 T Moore (US), M Hughes (Can), B Carr (US)*
16:46 P Cover (US), D Nyfjall (Swe)*, F Capan III (US)
16:57 A Truslow (US), C Cavaliere (US)*), A Schaake (US)
20:15 B Henson (US), R Nagano (Jpn), H Lebioda (US)
20:26 M Kim (US), J Smith (Eng), W Ding (Chn)*
20:37 S Stallings (US), P Summerhays (US)*, L Herbert (AUs)
20:48 J Dantorp (Swe), P Rodgers (US), R Armour (US)
20:59 T Pieters (Bel), A Wise (US), G Sargent (US)*
21:10 B DeChambeau (US), F Molinari (Ita), T Hatton (Eng)
21:21 T Hoge (US), S Garcia (Spa), S Straka (Aut)
21:32 J Rose (Eng), R Fowler (US), J Day (Aus)
21:43 P Reed (US), M Kuchar (US), SW Kim (Kor)
21:54 X Schauffele (US), V Hovland (Nor), J Rahm (Spa)
22:05 M Kaymer (Ger), S Cink (US), M Thorbjornsen (US)*
22:16 D Horsey (Eng), B Valdes (US), P Barjon (Fra)
22:27 J Gumberg (US), K Mueller (US), B Amat (Fra)*

Starting on hole 10

14:45 B Grant (US), V Norman (Swe), C Hoffman (US)
14:56 S Forsstrom (Swe), C Ortiz (Mex), M Moldovan (US)*
15:07 E Cole (US), T Lawrence (SA), A Schenk (US)
15:18 L List (US), W Nienaber (SA), A Del Rey (Spa)
15:29 A Meronk (Pol), H English (US), J Niemann (Chi)
15:40 A Noren (Swe), W Clark (US), A Eckroat (US)
15:51 K Kitayama (US), C Davis (Aus), R Henley (US)
16:02 C Smith (Aus), S Bennett (US), M Fitzpatrick (Eng)
16:13 B Horschel (US), C Kirk (US), B Harman (US)
16:24 B Koepka (US), H Matsuyama (Jpn), R McIlroy (NI)
16:35 S Muniz (Col), N Taylor (Can), T Montgomery (US)
16:46 O Browne Jr (US), D Puig (Spa), K Vilips (US)*
16:57 C Pereira (US), I Simmons (US)*, JJ Grey (Eng)
20:15 O Morales (Mex)*, D Germishuys (SA), J Solomon (US)
20:26 R Gerard (US), Katsuragawa (Jpn), M Brennan (US)*
20:37 H Buckley (US), A Svensson (Can), P Larrazabal (Spa)
20:48 C Young (US), D Wu (US), R Sloan (Can)
20:59 R Ishikawa (Jpn), K Streelman (US), M Pavon (Fra)
21:10 S Lowry (Ire), J Thomas (US), T Fleetwood (Eng)
21:21 Sungjae Im (Kor), KH Lee (Korea), JT Poston (US)
21:32 G Woodland (US), Scott (Aus), C Conners (Can)
21:43 C Morikawa (US), M Homa (US), S Scheffler (US)
21:54 D McCarthy (US), J Dahmen (US), A Hadwin (Can)
22:05 M McLean (NI)*, S Power (Ire), R Fox (NZ)
22:16 M Meissner (US), B Brown (Eng), G Charoenkul (Tha)
22:27 A Yang (HK)*, J Schutte (US), A Svoboda (US)

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Matt Cooper (now) and David Tindall (later)

Published: 2023-06-16 17:54:31

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