Date: June 14, 2013
Author: Omnisport

Aussies in touch at US Open

Luke Donald is the clubhouse leader as the Australian contingent made a solid start at the US Open, at a rain-affected Merion Golf Club. The Englishman was four under through 13 holes when play was called, with about half the field left stranded in their opening rounds. There is a wave of familiar faces in his wake, however, after Phil Mickelson began his quest for a fifth major title with a solid three-under 67 to be tied for second with US Masters champion Adam Scott (through 11). Defending champion Webb Simpson began strongly, carding two birdies and six pars to be in the mix in a tie for fourth – alongside Australians Mathew Goggin and Alistair Presnell, who are both through six holes. Only nine others shot under the card before darkness ensued, among them were England&aposs Lee Westwood – who is one under through 13. Belgium&aposs Nicolas Colsaerts finished his round at one-under 69, with two amateurs performing well early in Chris Williams and Gavin Hall in the mix. Northern Irishman Rory McIlroy is even par, while world number one Tiger Woods struggled his way to two over – with McIlroy through 11, while Woods is still on that hole after electing to pick his ball up once play was called. Joining McIlroy in a tie for 16th are Australians Jason Day (70) and John Senden (through 11), with 2013 PGA Tour winner Michael Thompson (through nine) and four-time major winner Ernie Els (through eight) at even par also. England&aposs Justin Rose, ranked fifth, shot a one-over 71, while fellow top-10 players Matt Kuchar and Brandt Snedeker struggled their way to four-over 74s. Australia&aposs Geoff Ogilvy – the 2006 champion – made a stunning recovery from an early struggle, bouncing back from five over through six to finish at two over with five holes to play. Sergio Garcia had a tough time of his opening round, carding a three-over 73, while major winners Martin Kaymer (through 13) and Graeme McDowell (12) are also three over.