Date: June 19, 2009
Author: PA Sport

Rain suspends US Open

Heavy rain has brought a premature end to the first day of the 2009 US Open at Bethpage Black. Defending champion Tiger Woods was among the players to start his first round and had reached the seventh when the siren went to suspend play with the whole course starting to flood as greenstaff battled against the elements. Woods was one-over-par – two behind four co-leaders, Johan Edfors, Andrew Parr, Ryan Spears and Jeff Brehaut – and headed for the clubhouse with a 10-foot putt for par on the green. Australians Michael Sim and 2006 champion Geoff Ogilvy were also at one-over after seven and five holes respectively, alongside Kiwi Michael Campbell. Robert Allenby (through seven) and Rod Pampling (four) are a further shot back at two-over. Officials were hoping for the weather to relent but the heavens continued to open and they decided at 2pm local time play would be abandoned for the rest of the day. The first round is due to resume at 7.30am local time on Friday. With rain expected to continue into Friday – and Saturday promising a deluge equal to Thursday&aposs – Mike Davis, the USGA senior director of rules and competitions, said a Monday finish was looking a distinct possibility as the body would not contemplate deciding the champion in fewer than 72 holes. “It&aposs only going to get worse but we will see what happens,” Englishman Paul Casey said of the weather forecast. “You are certainly going to have to strike the ball very well but it&aposs going to be the guy who keeps his head this week.” “Patience is paramount and you are going to have to deal with not only a very tough golf course but also some of the decisions that are being made like not being able to lift, clean and place.” “That&aposs going to be very difficult and you are going to have be patient and expect some difficult lies and some mud-balls. That&aposs the way it is.”