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Matt Fitzpatrick takes the lead in the final round of the US Open

Matt Fitzpatrick will take a share of the lead in the final round of the U.S. Open as he seeks a first major title and a historic Brookline double.

reigning champion Jon Rahm looked set to end a turbulent day at the top of the standings when he birdied 14th, 15th and 17th to take the lead, before recording a double bogey on 18th.

Rahm was unlucky to catch a fairway bunker with a well-hit drive, but then drilled his second shot over the hazard and found more sand in front of the green with his third.

The resulting six took the Ryder Cup star to three under par, one shot behind Fitzpatrick and Zalatoris, who had overcome the windy conditions to shoot 68 and 67 respectively.

For the second major in a row, England’s Fitzpatrick will play in the closing round of the final group, having teamed up with Mito Pereira in the PGA of America at Southern Hills last month.

On that occasion, a closing 73 meant Fitzpatrick missed the play-off between Zalatoris and Justin Thomas by two shots, Thomas winning his second US PGA title in the three-hole shootout.

A win on Sunday would see Fitzpatrick join Jack Nicklaus as the only players to win the US Amateur and the US Open on the same course, Nicklaus doing so at Pebble Beach in 1961 and 1972.

Matt Fitzpatrick on the 18th hole

(AP)

Fitzpatrick won the US Amateur at Brookline in 2013, the same year Justin Rose became the last Englishman to win the US Open at Merion.

“I would be lying if I said I didn’t think about it (winning). It would just mean the world,” Fitzpatrick said. “It’s obviously a special place for me and to go further and win a round of the US Open here would be even more special.

“The American amateur was one of the greatest accomplishments of my career and still is, and if I won a major here tomorrow he would definitely surpass him.

“My family is in town, I also have a few friends here and the family I’m staying with is fun too, so I’ll have lots of distractions which will be good with a late start time.

“I’m delighted to be giving myself another shot at a major tournament just a month later, I’m really, really proud of the way I played.”

Rory McIlroy shot a disappointing 73

(AP)

Rory McIlroyThe chances of seemed to fade quickly when he covered his first seven holes in three over par to slip five behind the world number one Scottie Schefflerwho had drilled from 102 yards for an eagle in the eighth to reach six under.

However, Scheffler ran a double bogey on the short 11th and dropped more shots on the next three holes, while McIlroy birdied on the 11th and relied on a brilliant display of putt to keep the leaders in his viewfinder on a sub, despite a disappointing 73. .

Zalatoris is yet to win on the PGA Tour, but has recorded five top-10 finishes in his last six majors, including a play-off loss at the US PGA Championship last month in Southern Hills.

And the 25-year-old proved once again that his game is perfectly suited for the sport’s biggest events with a superb 67 with four birdies and a solitary bogey, to set the target at four under par.

“After the US PGA, it was a bitter pill to swallow, but I feel good about my game,” Zalatoris said.

“Tomorrow will not be a simple test, you look at the great champions of the classification and this course is a beast. The work is not even close to being done.

Thomas was accidentally introduced as Justin Thompson on the first tee and was later heard expressing his frustration after being denied a pinfall near a drain in the fourth fairway.

“That’s what pisses me off, because so many other people would lie about being able to hit that, but it’s like I’m not going to hit it (the drain),” Thomas complained. “It’s bull****, man.”

Speaking after a round of 72 left him three over par, Thomas said: “I called an official to get a ruling on this, and in the spirit of the game I don’t wasn’t going to fall down the drain.

“I felt like I could have very easily told him (the rules official) that I was going to do it and get a free drop, but that wasn’t the case.”

Matt Fitzpatrick takes the lead in the final round of the US Open

Source link Matt Fitzpatrick takes the lead in the final round of the US Open

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