Erin Hills claims each of world's top three golfers

McIlroy, Day try to make up ground, make cut at US Open
An early US Open departure for Day and McIlroy
Author

26 June, 2017

Casey recovered from a triple-bogey on his fifth hole of the day to add a 71 to his opening 66 and set a clubhouse target of seven under par, which was later matched by Fleetwood and American duo Brooks Koepka and Brian Harman.

The way this third round is going, odds are against him becoming the first player since Tiger Woods at Torrey Pines in 2008 to win a U.S. Open in his home state. Dustin Johnson, Jason Day and Rory McIlroy are heading home.

Four years after Justin Rose ended a 43-year wait for an English victor, Paul Casey and Tommy Fleetwood headed into the third round of the US Open at Erin Hills in a four-way tie for the lead.

"The golf course has got plenty of moisture in it", Justin Rose said after his 72.

In the build-up to the US Open I have seen some TV adverts where players produce fantastic trick shots - yet they have been moaning about the possibility of missing a 60-yard fairway.

However, things quickly went south as he dropped that shot immediately at the 12th, before a shot into the fescue at the 14th saw him post a triple-bogey, and another bogey came on the following hole.

Three more birdies on his inward nine took him to seven under and a piece of US Open history.

Lurking one back are a trio of Americans Jamie Lovemark (69), JB Holmes (69) and overnight leader Rickie Fowler, who slumped to a 1-over 73, carding three consecutive bogeys in a back nine retreat.

It's likely that we will have a first-time major champion at Erin Hills, but of all of the possible champions nobody would be as surprising as the two players in this group.

None of those 18 players has won a major tournament to date.

I've never a led US Open, so it will be a very cool experience. That's the lowest differential after 36 holes in the U.S. Open, mainly because until 2012, everyone within 10 shots of the lead made the cut at the U.S. Open.

Paul Casey of England reacts after finishing on the ninth green during the second round of the 2017 US Open at Erin Hills on 16 June 2017 in Hartford.

A commercial blimp crashed to the ground and caught fire just outside the course Thursday, about the time the county health department was analyzing samples that confirmed evidence of the E. coli bacteria in water at a hydration station near the 12th hole. Andrew "Beef" Johnston, one of the internet's favorite professional golfers, has made the weekend at -2. He bogeyed the 11th, 12th and 13th holes and missed a short birdie putt on the par-five 14th.

The four leaders tied at the top after the second round are just getting started for the day but a few of the players that got out early on Moving Day are making birdie after birdie to climb up the leaderboard, which is creating quite the cluster at the top. "As of right now, I'm one shot back ... but just more so for the confidence going into tomorrow". I try, but only in the company of people I know to be extremely patient and, if possible, family members. "Make the lines a little tighter just as far as off the tee and into some greens where you have to hit your spots just a little bit more", said Rickie Fowler, who birdied three of his last five holes to finish at 10 under par. No, I wouldn't want to watch U.S. Open golf every week, but I want to watch it this week.

Of course, there's a lesson in this for McIlroy too.

Day and McIlroy never had much of a chance, both out of the picture before Johnson even teed off.

"The greens were still receptive to good shots, but they were firmer and faster", said Fowler.

While he's looking forward to winning Champions titles, his focus is on competing in as many majors as he can. Moments later, he began a run of five straight birdies that put him right where he wanted to be going into the weekend.

"Not every day you enjoy a round of golf with an 8 on the card, but I'm a pretty happy man", Casey told the tournament's website. "Yeah, it was a bit of a roller coaster".


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