Rory McIlroy one shot off US Open lead as he looks to end eight-year wait for fifth Major triumph

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Rory McIlroy one shot off US Open lead as he looks to end eight-year wait for fifth Major triumph
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Rory McIlroy shrugged off a disappointing start to his second round at the US Open to remain in the hunt for a fifth Major triumph.

The Northern Irishman, whose last Major success came in 2014, when he won both The Open and PGA Championship, heads into the weekend at Brookline one shot back off Collin Morikawa, who is the joint-clubhouse leader on five-under-par after hitting a superb four-under 66 on Friday.

The reigning Open champion shares the lead through 36 holes with fellow American Joel Dahmen.

However, the competition in Massachusetts is shaping up to be particularly fierce, with McIlroy currently tied for second place along with a quartet of rivals in defending US Open champion Jon Rahm, Hayden Buckley, Aaron Wise and Beau Hossler.

One shot behind that chasing pack on three-under is Scottie Scheffler, the current Masters champion and World No1, with England’s Matt Fitzpatrick on two-under alongside the in-form Sam Burns going into round three.

In the hunt: Rory McIlroy is one stroke off the US Open lead heading into round three at Brookline (Getty Images)
In the hunt: Rory McIlroy is one stroke off the US Open lead heading into round three at Brookline (Getty Images)

“I think I have to go out with the mindset this week that I’m going to try to win my first (major) again,” said McIlroy, who successfully defended his Canadian Open title three years later last weekend with a two-stroke victory in Toronto.

“I’m playing as good a golf as I’ve played in a long time. I have a lot of experience. I’m in a good place. I’m really happy with where my game is at, and I think that’s the most important thing.”

The US Open follows hot on the heels of the LIV Golf’s opening event in St Albans last week and amid all the ongoing controversy surrounding the Saudi-funded breakaway tour, with arguably the most high-profile rebel, Phil Mickelson, missing the cut at Brookline as a three-over 73 saw him finish on a disastrous 11-over.

Only four LIV Golf players managed to make the cut on Friday, with Dustin Johnson and Patrick Reed both on one-over, one stroke ahead of Bryson DeChambeau. England’s Richard Bland was the other, also on two-over.

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