US Open: Michelson grabs early lead

Tacoma (United States): Phil Mickelson made a storming start to the 115th US Open at Chambers Bay yesterday as the world’s top golfers tried to get to grips with the largely untested links layout.

The 45-year-old American had birdies at the third and fifth to dip to two under par on the testing par-70 course. That put him atop the early leaderboard where he was joined by Sweden’s Henrik Stenson, who birdied the second and third.

Conditions overlooking the scenic Puget Sound here were ideal for scoring with light cloud cover and no wind as locally-born Michael Putnam hit the first ball. The challenging golf course apart, there were several intriguing storylines to follow.

World No 1 Rory McIlroy seeks a fifth major, Masters champion Jordan Spieth aims to make it halfway to the fabled calender-year Grand Slam and crowd favourite Mickelson is desperate to win a US Open, after six runner-up finishes, and therein complete his career Grand Slam.

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