John Senden is nothing if not a realist – and he’s not banking on a miracle to run down Jordan Spieth.
But the genial Queenslander is certain that if he can peel off another good round tomorrow, a high US Open finish remains a distinct possibility.
Senden, who finished T10 at Olympic three years ago, gave himself a chance to beat that with a fighting even-par 70 today to finish four over.
It doesn’t smack of his best ever round, but rest assured he’ll start much later tomorrow having leapfrogged many as the savage course takes its toll.
Senden made a superb birdie to kickstart his round, then rolled in a 2.5m birdie on the short par-four 16th to bookend a solid fighting round.
“I set my goal today to get in the red and played well enough to do it. Just a few putts here and there could have put me in a really good spot,” he said.
“I played well and combined it with reasonably solid putting … but you’ve got to play good shots all day here to keep yourself in the red.”
Senden has managed seven birdies in his past two rounds, a stat that encourages him to think he can make a run tomorrow.
“On both Friday and Saturday I’ve been shooting some birdies out there which puts a smile on my face and tells me you can do it on this golf course, as hard as it is.
“I set the goal now to be a top-10 finish realistically, but if I can somehow get it back towards even par, it might be a chance. Who knows? It’s just that sort of course.
“But whatever happens, I’ve had a good attitude towards accepting things well this week and hence I’m hanging about.”