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After day two of the 2023 Open Championship there is a runaway leader at the top of the leaderboard. Brian Harman from the USA produced a stunning round of 65 in tough conditions at Royal Liverpool and is five shots clear of the rest of the field as we reach the halfway point of the final major of the season.
Harman was one of only a few men to excel in the blustery conditions on Friday with some of the game’s biggest stars playing themselves out of contention or even out of the tournament altogether on day two. If you missed any of the action, here is everything you need to know.
The Open Championship 2023 Day Two Leaderboard
Brian Harman (USA)
Tommy Fleetwood (ENG)
Sepp Straka (AUT)
Min Woo Lee (AUS)
Shubhankar Sharma (IND)
Jason Day (AUS)
Adrian Otaegui (ESP)
Emiliano Grillo (ARG)
Jordan Spieth (USA)
Cameron Young (USA)
Rory McIlroy (NIR)
Round one highlights
Harman pulls clear
The star of the show on day two at Royal Liverpool was undoubtedly Brian Harman who made the course and the conditions look very straightforward, while almost everyone else toiled away. The 36-year-old, who hasn’t won a tournament on the PGA Tour in six years, carded an immaculate round of 65 which included three birdies, one eagle and zero bogeys.
Harman got off to a great start on the front nine and saw his putter get hot across holes 3-6 with the American birdieing each one. He then went from hole 7 to hole 17 in even par, making several tough par saves before going uber-aggressive on the par 5 18th. The final hole on the course is fraught with danger but Harman took it on and got his reward – an eagle three to end the day.
He takes a healthy five-shot lead into day three but it’s still far too early to start protecting a lead so he will look to go aggressive once more on Saturday.
Fleetwood scrambles well to stay in contention
Tommy Fleetwood, who took an overnight lead into the second round, was one of the last players out on the course on Friday which meant two things. Firstly, it meant he had seen his lead wiped away by Brian Harman and secondly, it meant that he had to play in the worst of the conditions.
Despite the odds being stacked against him, Fleetwood can be relatively pleased with his even-par round of 71. While he may feel aggrieved to have carded three bogeys, things could have been significantly worse for the Englishman. He made several sensational up-and-downs from the rough, while he also sunk a 60-footer for a birdie on the tenth.
He will go out in the final group on Saturday and with the crowd behind him, he will still quietly fancy his chances of winning his first major this weekend.
Scheffler makes the cut by the skin of his teeth
Scottie Scheffler came into day two thinking about closing the lead at the top of the leaderboard, but he ended it having to dig his ball out of a bunker face to scramble a par to make the cut. It was arguably the worst round of golf he has played since last October but he still has a chance to climb the leaderboard over the weekend.
The miraculous par-save on the 18th means that he still has a fighting chance of extending his 19-tournament run of finishing inside the top 12. His putter will need to have a better day at the office, however, with the world number one missing several straightforward par putts throughout day two.
Huge names to miss the weekend
Although Scottie Scheffler made the cut by the skin of his teeth, a number of big names weren’t so fortunate. Two men who have had weeks to forget are Dustin Johnson and Justin Thomas. The American duo have crashed out of the tournament with scores of +13 and +11 respectively with both of them carding rounds in the 80s in Liverpool.
Other big names who won’t be around this weekend include Justin Rose, Collin Morikawa and Shane Lowry. In more positive news, Christo Lamprecht, the amateur who led after one round, will be playing over the weekend despite a round of 79 on Friday.
The Open Championship updated odds
- Brian Harman – 6/4
- Tommy Fleetwood – 9/2
- Rory McIlroy – 10/1
- Jason Day – 16/1
- Jordan Spieth – 16/1
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