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Justin Thomas makes US Open history

18 Juin 2017

Thomas soared up the leaderboard from 22nd, and all it took was a 9-under 63, the lowest round to par in a major long known as the toughest test in golf.

A dizzying day of action could be topped on Sunday, with six players within three shots of the lead all eyeing their first major. Harman was at 12-under 204 and still only had a one-shot lead, with Rickie Fowler two shots behind.

This isn't like most Opens.

Once again golfers were taking full advantage of a softened Erin Hills layout left defenseless by overnight rain, attacking the pins with gusto. It led to an eagle to close out his 63.

However, Harman and Tommy Fleetwood - who had shared first place with Brooks Koepka and Paul Casey at the start of the day - came on strong over the inward nine to reclaim pole position.

Fowler was among those who wouldn't mind seeing the conditions toughen up for the final 18 holes. "It's sometimes nice being out front because you can afford to make a mistake".

Fowler agreed that the wide open leaderboard - none of the top 16 players have won a major - made it anyone's title to win. And he wasn't through. There will be two referees stationed at each of the non-par-3 holes. The latter quartet all shot 68 in round three. He shot 81 the next day in a blustery wind. Going into the final round, 42 players were still under par. That shot hit halfway up and trickled back down the hill. No one had a chance.

Johnson is the defending champion at the U.S. Open, a tournament that hasn't had a repeat victor since Curtis Strange in 1989.

The U.S. Open didn't seem to faze him, and he delivered a variety of big shots that led to his sensational finish.

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"We make a decision to modify a golf course, whether it's green speeds, rough, directions we're mowing, how much water we're applying or not's not as if we don't listen to feedback from players, " said Davis, the executive director of the USGA. What dropped him under double digits were two bogeys that didn't really matter.

He rolled in an 18-foot birdie putt on No. 5 from the edge of the green that broke so severely that he stood with his toes facing the hole and rapped the ball toward his left foot.

Johnny Miller owned the previous best round of 8-under 63, set en route to victory in the final round at the 1973 US Open at Oakmont.

There will be an 18-hole playoff on Monday if the leaders are tied after 72 holes. The soft Black Course allowed players to take dead aim, and Barnes opened with rounds of 67 and 65.

He then drilled a 300-yard second shot to around eight feet before rolling in his eagle putt to roars from the galleries.

"After last year's U.S. Open we made the commitment to review all of our championships and rules and related protocols and procedures and we've done that", Senior Managing Director of Championships & Governance John Bodenhamer said.

Jason Day followed up a 79 in the first round with a 75 in round two, Rory McIlroy was always up against it after a 78 on Thursday and although he shot one under on Friday he was well short of the cut.

"Yeah, 12 under, I'd have about a 10-shot lead in most Opens", he said. The tournament was never really in doubt after that, though the wind arrived and Kaymer couldn't maintain the pace.