Ludvig Åberg leading by one at halfway mark

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Rory McIlroy, Tony Finau and Matthieu Pavon lie two shots off the lead on three under.
Posted on
June 14, 2024
The Editorial Team in ,
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Just a year after turning professional, Sweden’s Ludvig Åberg is playing in just his third major tournament and holds a one-shot lead at the halfway stage of his US Open debut.

Åberg added a 69 to his opening 66 at Pinehurst to finish five under par, a shot ahead of Belgium’s Thomas Detry and the American pair of Bryson DeChambeau and Patrick Cantlay.

Rory McIlroy, Tony Finau and Matthieu Pavon lie two shots off the lead on three under, Pavon dropping shots on his last two holes on Friday.

The last player to win the US Open on their tournament debut was amateur Francis Ouimet in 1913.

“I think a US Open is supposed to be hard,” Åberg said. “It’s supposed to be tricky and it’s supposed to challenge any aspect of your game and I feel like it’s really doing that.

“But I’m super fortunate with the way that things have turned out over the last couple days and hopefully we’ll be able to keep it up.”

Scheffler made the halfway cut on the mark of five over par following a second round of 74, while former Open champion Francesco Molinari did so in amazing fashion with a hole-in-one on the ninth, his last hole of the day.

McIlroy had hoped to exploit ideal conditions and fresh greens on Friday morning but hit a mediocre chip from short of the green on his opening hole, the par-five 10th, and was unable to convert the birdie putt from 12 feet.

That was McIlroy’s first five of the week – he had birdied both par fives on Thursday – and another soon followed on the 11th when he was unable to get up and down after a slightly pulled approach span back off the green.

McIlroy also bogeyed the par-three 15th and the Northern Irishman’s day looked set to go from bad to worse when his birdie putt on the 17th rolled past the hole and off the front of the green, but he promptly chipped in for an unorthodox par.

A first birdie of the day finally arrived on the third and McIlroy made a vital save on the fifth after seeing Scheffler and Xander Schauffele both run up double-bogey sevens after needing two attempts to find the putting surface from the native area left of the green.

McIlroy’s approach had also ended up in the same area but he wisely cut his losses with a more conservative third shot across the green and two-putted for par, although he ended the day with a bogey on the ninth.

“Obviously it didn’t go quite as well as yesterday, but I feel like the golf course played a little more difficult, even though we were off in the morning,” McIlroy said.

Rory McIlroy, with hand on hip, waits to play a shot in the US Open
Rory McIlroy was satisfied to remain in a good position after a second round of 72 in the US Open (George Walker/AP)

“Overall I felt like I did a pretty good job at keeping some of the mistakes off the scorecard. I wish I had converted a couple more of the chances. Hit the ball pretty well. I think only missed one fairway. So I had plenty of opportunities.

“Wasn’t quite as good with the putter today but still overall in a great position going into the weekend.”

DeChambeau finished second in a US PGA Championship which featured record low scoring last month, but insisted he was ready for a completely different challenge at Pinehurst.

Bryson DeChambeau lines up a putt in the US Open at Pinehurst
Bryson DeChambeau insists he would relish a ‘diabolical’ challenge in the US Open (Matt York/AP)

“Even though it was a morning round, it actually started to get pretty firm already, which is a sign that they want this golf course rolling by tomorrow and Sunday,” the 2020 champion said.

“I’m excited for the test and challenge and I think it’s going to continue to evolve, especially with the conditions being as hot as they are.

“If the wind picks up, it’s going to be diabolical.”

Northern Ireland’s Tom McKibbin birdied the 18th to make the cut on the mark on his major championship debut, but Robert MacIntyre, Viktor Hovland and Justin Rose all missed out by a shot.

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Pos.PlayerTo ParR1R2Total
1Ludvig Åberg-56669135
T2Bryson DeChambeau-46769136
T2Thomas Detry-46967136
T2Patrick Cantlay-46571136
T5Rory McIlroy-36572137
T5Tony Finau-36869137
T5Matthieu Pavon-36770137
8Hideki Matsuyama-27266138
T9Tom Kim-17168139
T9Tyrrell Hatton-16871139
T9Xander Schauffele-17069139
T9Akshay Bhatia-16871139
T9Tim Widing-17168139
T9Corey Conners-16970139
T9Zac Blair-17069139
T16Billy HorschelPar7367140
T16Sam BurnsPar7367140
T16Stephan JaegerPar7070140
T16Sergio GarciaPar6971140
T16Russell HenleyPar7070140
T21Taylor Pendrith+17170141
T21Frankie Capan III+17170141
T21Seonghyeon Kim+16972141
T21Nicolai Højgaard+17269141
T21Sam Bennett+16972141
T21Nico Echavarria+17269141
T27Brian Harman+27171142
T27Sepp Straka+27072142
T27Jackson Suber+26973142
T27Chris Kirk+27171142
T27Adam Scott+27072142
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T57Francesco Molinari+57372145
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T75Jason Scrivener+67472146
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T140Grant Forrest+137776153
T140Santiago de la Fuente(a)+137875153
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T140Lucas Glover+137479153
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T145Mackenzie Hughes+147282154
T145Maxwell Moldovan+148074154
T145Matteo Manassero+147975154
T145Stewart Hagestad(a)+147975154
T149Chris Naegel+158174155
T149Phil Mickelson+157976155
T149Carson Schaake+157976155
152Colin Prater(a)+177978157
T153Otto Black+197980159
T153Riki Kawamoto+197782159
T153Rikuya Hoshino+197881159
156Charlie Reiter+208080160
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US Open 2024

Date: June 13th - 16th 2024

Location: Pinehurst Resort & Country Club (Course No. 2), Village of Pinehurst, NC

Purse: $21,500,000

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