Carnage at US Open as world's top three sent packing

Matsuyama vaulted into contention at the U.S. Open with a 7-under 65 on Friday, moving to 5 under and a tie for eighth - just two shots back of the four-way tie atop the crowded leaderboard. 1, 2 and 3 all missed the cut in a major. All four finished Friday's second round at 7-under-par 137 playing a course that prevented the world's three top-ranked players from moving on.

Henrik Stenson. Alex Noren.

Casey, who had shot a six-under-par 66 on Thursday, came unstuck with a disastrous triple-bogey eight on the 14th after teeing off on the 10th hole. He set the target early under warm sunshine, and even as the wind tapered in the afternoon, no one could catch him.

Looking ahead to the weekend, Fleetwood said: "It's going to be great". He enters the final round in a three-way tie for second place at 11-under par, along with Tommy Fleetwood and Brooks Koepka.

Si Woo Kim, who captured The Players Championship a month ago, had a 70 and was at 5-under 139 along with a pair of U.S. Open newcomers.

Six players start the final round within three shots of the lead, all eyeing their first major. "I have a tee time on Saturday (and) so you just kind of learn along the way to never really give up". The top 18 players on the leaderboard going into the weekend have combined for zero majors.

Nine of the last 10 U.S. Open winners were first, second or third through 36 holes.

And Harmon can not be discounted having arrived at Erin Hills in capturing last month a second PGA Tour title with victory at the Wells Fargo Championship. The USGA is providing complimentary bottled water the rest of the week.

NOTEWORTHY: A 94-year-old man stopped breathing while in a grandstand on the sixth hole and died of what officials said appeared to be natural causes. More important, he was happy with how he played Friday and remained optimistic that he could carry that over to the weekend. The 1990 Open at Medinah also had a cut of one-over. He shot 73 and missed the cut by three.

It is fair to say few would have anticipated Brian Harman being in pole position at the start of the final day, leading by one shot at 12 under par. "I couldn't possibly shoot any higher than I did".

I'm speaking slightly from personal experience here: I played all my junior golf in SC, so I caught the tail-end of Harmon's junior golf career in next-door Georgia.

"Someone has a very good chance of ending up with their first major tomorrow", Fowler said.

"I was in the hay too much over the last couple of days", Day told reporters about the knee-high fescue grass lining the fairways at the links-style layout in the Wisconsin countryside.

While Erin Hills was still not playing as hard as many past U.S. Open courses, it was beginning to firm up from the early week rain, plus the USGA had a few tricks up its sleeve.

But the Englishman recovered magnificently with five straight birdies from the 17th, and a 71 left him sharing the lead.

"Keep moving up the leaderboard and see how good you can get, I guess", said Stricker, who is eight shots behind the leaders. "Yeah, it was a bit of a roller coaster". PGA Tour rookie Xander Schauffele didn't make a bogey at Erin Hills until his 27th hole, had his hiccup with a double bogey on the par-3 13th hole but still managed a 73.

  • Eleanor Harrison