Kisner first round leader in benign Open conditions

Danny Woods
July 21, 2018

In a cruel stroke of misfortune, all eight Australians at Carnoustie copped the worst of the Open's notoriously fickle weather conditions in the first two rounds as Americans Spieth, Rickie Fowler and Matt Kuchar cashed in on golden sunshine to soar up the leaderboard on day two.

What about that guy who shot 63 on the Sunday of the US Open at Shinnecock Hills for a second straight top-five US Open finish?

"I'm just playing to my spots, " he said.

Woods was six off the lead at the halfway stage after consecutive rounds of 71, and he made a solid start to the third round as he opened with three pars before beginning his march up the leaderboard with a birdie at the fourth. In terms of place, he is well back, sitting in a tie for 32nd - the seventh consecutive tournament in which he has not ended the first round in the top 10. He predicted the lead number might get to 10-under before day's end and he seemed fine with that.

Woods, who denied reports he had snubbed waiting autograph hunters at practice on Wednesday, said he played better than his score suggested. The steady, light rain made them a little slower and a lot more predictable. Strategies changed. Slightly softer conditions meant power players who were going beyond the trouble hit more irons, and shorter players hit more drivers and fairway metals.

He followed with a 40-footer for birdie at the 11th, but that turned out to be the last of his three bogeys.

There wasn't enough rain to turn brown fairways green, though it at least kept shots from rolling endlessly.

But Tiger is closer than he's been in quite some time, certainly closer to the major form that hasn't really been on display since four back surgeries left him wondering if he could even continue playing.

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"He's good", said Kisner. Fleetwood, the top player on the European Tour past year, put together the best round of the week at Carnoustie with a 65.

Kevin Kisner decides what to do after hitting his ball into the Barry Burn on the 18th hole on Friday.

Dustin Johnson was headed toward being the first No. 1 player in the world to miss the cut at the Open since Luke Donald in 2011 at Royal St. George's.

Tiger Woods rattled off six birdies in 11 holes during the third round of The Open Championship at Carnoustie en route to a 5-under 66. His low ball flight, grinding nature and good putting give him the right ingredients. I doubt he's been called "Zach" that many times. maybe some people do assume, when they see the name up there, that it's Dustin.

His round was defined by a double-bogey six at the 10th, where he had just a wedge to the green but went over the back and took four to get down with the putter after his first attempt rolled back to his feet.

McIlroy played in the final pairing at Augusta National with Patrick Reed and never challenged him.

"I know as well as anyone that anything can happen in the Open".

Fleetwood entered the weekend on five under par - just one off the lead - while McIlroy started Saturday on four under.

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