5 things to know for Friday’s second round at the U.S. Open

All eyes are on Rory McIlroy at the U.S. Open.

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The 2022 U.S. Open is off and running, and though we’re only one round in, there’s plenty of firepower on the leaderboard to discuss. The gang’s all here, from Rory and Rahm to Scottie and Scott.

What’s in store for Round 2? Here are five things to know for Friday at The Country Club.

Rory’s electric play continues

Rory McIlroy made a serious statement with his win at the RBC Canadian Open last week, defending his title after the tournament took a two-year hiatus due to Covid.

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And it appears his hot play isn’t cooling off anytime soon. McIlroy carded two birdies on his last three holes to finish three under par for the day, and one shot off the lead held by Adam Hadwin at four under.

It’s been nearly eight long years since McIlroy claimed his last major championship at the 2014 PGA. Will this be the week he breaks through for No. 5?

He’s certainly off to a promising start.

A triumphant return for Matthew Fitzpatrick?

Nearly nine years ago, Matthew Fitzpatrick achieved the greatest accomplishment of his young career by winning the U.S. Amateur championship at The Country Club.

Now, he’s returning as a seasoned professional with multiple wins, attempting to win his first major championship.

Like McIlroy, he’s off to a good start, posting an opening round of 68. Two under par, two off the lead. One to watch for sure.

This leaderboard is DEEP!

In addition to McIlroy, this first-round leaderboard is jam-packed with big names. Forty-one players are within four shots of Hadwin’s lead, including:

Dustin Johnson
Justin Rose
Collin Morikawa
Adam Scott
Jon Rahm
Max Homa
Will Zalatoris
Justin Thomas
Gary Woodland
Hideki Matsuyama
Xander Schauffele
Keegan Bradley
Viktor Hovland
Scottie Scheffler
Webb Simpson
Patrick Reed

Phew. That’s what we call a leaderboard. Bring on Round 2!

What about Phil?

phil mickelson stares u.s. open
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By: James Colgan

As the defacto spokesman of the new LIV Golf Series, there’s been plenty of intrigue around what Phil Mickelson will do this week.

He arrived in Brookline hoping to contend for the one major that has eluded him in his pursuit of the career grand slam.

Alas, his chances look dimmer by the minute after he posted a round of eight-over 78 on Thursday.

He’s currently T144, ahead of only nine players, and barring a miracle, Friday’s round will likely be the last we see of him at Brookline. But hey, this is golf, so truly, you never know.

The forecast

Thursday’s early players were gifted with calm conditions while the afternoon wave bore the brunt of some not-insignificant gusts.

On Friday, the field order swaps, but the wind speed will remain fairly consistent throughout the day, with 12-16 mph gusts expected. There’s also a chance of thunderstorms from about noon to 3 p.m. local time.

The good news? The temperature is pretty much ideal, maxing out at 84 degrees around midday. Summer golf. You just can’t beat it!

jessica marksbury

Golf.com Photographer

As a four-year member of Columbia’s inaugural class of female varsity golfers, Jessica can out-birdie everyone on the masthead. She can out-hustle them in the office, too, where she’s primarily responsible for producing both print and online features, and overseeing major special projects, such as GOLF’s inaugural Style Is­sue, which debuted in February 2018. Her origi­nal interview series, “A Round With,” debuted in November of 2015, and appeared in both in the magazine and in video form on GOLF.com.