Housemates Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner set the pace in the 147th Open Championship as Tommy Fleetwood and Rory McIlroy headed the European bid to end American dominance of golf’s majors.
Johnson, who is looking to become the first player in history to win major titles at Augusta, St Andrews and Carnoustie, added a 67 to his opening 69 to set the clubhouse target on six under par.
First-round leader Kisner looked set to surpass that with ease when he birdied the 13th and 14th to reach eight under, only to hit his second shot to the 18th into the Barry Burn and run up a double-bogey six.
That meant Fleetwood was just a shot off the lead after earlier defying miserable conditions to card the only bogey-free round of the day, his flawless 65 just two shots outside the course record he set in last year’s Dunhill Links Championship.
After visa problems meant he arrived in Scotland just hours before his opening round and had to play with borrowed clubs, Jhonattan Vegas deserved the slice of luck he enjoyed on the 18th on day two.
This legit looks like a drill Padraig Harrington would do of his own accord. pic.twitter.com/jiSGM64P0F— Kyle Porter (@KylePorterCBS) July 20, 2018
Padraig Harrington’s drive on the sixth finished close to the out-of-bounds fence, but that did not stop the 2007 Carnoustie champion from playing the shot and manufacturing a birdie.
⏱️ ROUND IN 60 SECONDS ⏱️July 20, 2018
Tommy Fleetwood struggled to an opening 72 but reaped the rewards of some work on the range afterwards, carding six birdies in the only bogey-free round of the day on Friday.
Matt Kuchar through 2 rounds last year: -4, 2 back
Matt Kuchar through 2 rounds this year: -4, 2 back— Justin Ray (@JustinRayGolf) July 20, 2018
The Golf Channel’s Justin Ray points out the similarities between this year and last year for 2017 runner-up Matt Kuchar.
Just 3 strokes off the lead, @JordanSpieth is in the hunt.July 20, 2018
The prospects of yet another American major winner coming from Carnoustie housemates Johnson, Kisner, Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler. Johnson and Kisner share the lead on six under, but defending champion Spieth and Fowler are just three behind.
- Press Association