Rory McIlroy And Lee Westwood In Contention At Winged Foot

"It is gettable if you play well and hit the fairways,"

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Rory McIlroy and Lee Westwood sit two strokes off the first-round lead at the US Open as American Justin Thomas set the early pace in New York.
Rory McIlroy And Lee Westwood In Contention At Winged Foot. Picture Courtesy Of BBC.

Rory McIlroy and Lee Westwood sit two strokes off the first-round lead at the US Open as American Justin Thomas set the early pace in New York.

Former champion Rory McIlroy, of Northern Ireland, and England’s former world number one Lee Westwood both shot 67 at an unusually benign Winged Foot.

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Justin Thomas birdied the 18th to go one clear of Belgian Thomas Pieters and Patrick Reed and Matthew Wolff of the US.

Reed had a hole-in-one at the par-three seventh, as did Will Zalatoris in a 70.

Zalatoris almost holed his second ace of the round at the par-three 13th but his ball hit the flagstick and rolled a couple of feet away.

In the previous five US Opens held at Winged Foot, there had been only two holes-in-one.

Belgium’s Thomas Pieters and American Matthew Wolff are at four under after producing the best rounds from the late starters.

Lee Westwood is still chasing an elusive first major after twice finishing third in this tournament – in 2008 and 2011.

The 47-year-old got off to a flying start as he birdied the 11th and 12th, having started on the 10th tee, and rolled in another at 15 in response to his first bogey of the day.

The two-time major runner-up traded birdies and bogeys on his second nine but finished with a birdie at the par-five ninth to move into a share of fifth place.

“It is gettable if you play well and hit the fairways,” said Lee Westwood about the usually tough Mamaroneck venue.

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“It becomes a beast of a golf course if you begin missing fairways and greens in the wrong places. It is not going to get any easier.”

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