McIlroy and Day get the weekend off

Cheryl Sanders
June 17, 2017

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. With birdies on the four of the last six holes, he shot 71.

On a wild day of highs and lows - and even a commercial blimp that crashed and caught fire outside the golf course during the round - Fowler emerged with a one-shot lead over Paul Casey and U.S. Open rookie Xander Schauffele in a most peculiar debut for the 11-year-old golf course.

Starting the day in a respectable position of even-par, Adam Scott sealed his exit with a disappointing 75.

Rory Mcilroy, of Ireland, makes his way to the 12th hole during the first round of the U.S. Open golf tournament Thursday, June 15, 2017, at Erin Hills in Erin, Wis. World number one Johnson becomes the ninth player to miss the cut having won the USGA's blue ribbon event 12 months previous.

It was the first time since the world ranking began in 1986 that the top three players missed the cut in any major.

Paul Casey rode a rollercoaster to a four-way share of second-round lead at the US Open on Friday but it was the end of the line for the world's three top-ranked players. The cut for the top 60 and ties was at 1-over 145, tying a U.S. Open record set in 1990 at Medinah.


"Myself and Rory, we didn't quite have the greatest tee game yesterday and it showed in the scores", said McIlroy, who finished at five-over.

In his last 17 starts in majors, No. 1 Johnson has eight top 10s, including his win at Oakmont past year, and just two missed cuts.

"I lost a bit of skin out there", Casey said of the triple bogey.

However, the Englishman then produced a stunning comeback, picking up shots at five successive holes from the 17th to return to seven under.

"If you look at the golf course and even talk to me, Jason or Rory, this course sets up flawless for us", Johnson said.

"I guess it's rare you get through a US Open or any major without some kind of a hiccup".


Ironically, while others were glad to see the unusually wide and generous fairways at Erin Hills, Day thought it might have been a hindrance for him. But I think at the end of the day it's competitive rounds with a card in my hand that I need and I've been very light on them this year. I just struggled on the greens.

The one-under-par total was a substantial improvement on Thursday's six-over-par 78, but with the cut projected at one-over-par, it was too little, too late for the popular Northern Irishman. The top 18 players on the leaderboard going into the weekend have combined for zero majors.

He is making his third start at the U.S. Open, with missed cuts in both previous starts in 2012 (77-72) and 2015 (69-79).

Masters champion Sergio Garcia, who shot a 1-under 71, says "I think the greens are getting U.S. Open-like, but not as firm as they're going to get if we don't get any rain". "And just unfortunately, this didn't pan out".

A few hours later, the defending U.S. Open also got the hook.

"It's been the best preparation going into a major, I felt like, in my career, which is playing in majors and knowing what I needed to do to prep for a tournament such as this". Fellow-countryman Graeme McDowell follows him out of the tournament, joined by the likes of Jason Dufner, Jason Day and Danny Willett - who withdrew due to the recurrence of a back injury.


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