Thomas grabs US Open lead as Reed, McIlroy lurk, Tiger fades | Dailytrust

Thomas grabs US Open lead as Reed, McIlroy lurk, Tiger fades

The ‘Smokin Hills’ Golf Course at Illara-Mokin
The ‘Smokin Hills’ Golf Course at Illara-Mokin

Justin Thomas closed with a 25-foot birdie putt to grab the early clubhouse lead over ace-firing Patrick Reed with Rory McIlroy two adrift in Thursday’s opening round of the 120th US Open.

World No 3 Thomas, the 2017 PGA Championship winner, fired a five-under par 65 at Winged Foot to edge ahead of fellow American Reed, the 2018 Masters champion, at the famed Mamaroneck, New York, layout.

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No spectators for US Open golf due to Covid-19

“This is one of the better rounds I’ve had tee to green. I was very proud of my patience,” Thomas said. “I got off to a good start.”

Reed blasted a hole-in-one at the 165-yard par-3 seventh and ran off three birdies in four holes on the back nine to share the lead until the amazing finish by Thomas.

“I was just trying to hit myself a solid iron shot,” Reed said of his ace. “I took a little off it, 90 per cent, and one-hopped it in.”

There were no spectators to applaud either of their amazing shots as a coronavirus pandemic precaution, the deadly virus having delayed the event from its usual June date.

Tiger Woods, a 15-time major winner chasing a fourth US Open title at age 44, grinded all day but closed bogey-double bogey to stand on 73.

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