Tiger Woods’ struggles continued as he carded a 10-over-par 80 in the first round of the US Open at Chambers Bay.
The 14-time major winner had a triple bogey seven and is 14 shots behind Dustin Johnson of America and Sweden’s Henrik Stenson who lead on five under.
Johnson’s compatriot Patrick Reed is second on four under.
Scotland’s Marc Warren is the leading Briton on two under, while world number one Rory McIlroy and 2013 champion Justin Rose finished two over.
What happened to Woods?
The former world number one set the pattern for what would turn out to be his worst round at the US Open with a bogey-bogey start. Wild drives, short-iron failures and missed putts followed in a disastrous opening 80.
One hack out of the rough led to him losing grip on his club and watching as it disappeared over his left shoulder and 30 feet behind him. He had to check it carefully to make sure it had not been bent in the process.
Woods also missed the 13th fairway, the widest on the course at a touch over 100 yards, despite ditching his driver and using a three-wood for accuracy.
It was the par-four holes that proved most problematic with eight bogeys and a triple-bogey seven.
And to cap off an awful day for the 39-year-old American, he topped a three-wood on the last which scuttled into the deepest bunker on the course as he finished with a bogey.
Any highlights? He managed a birdie on the 16th.
Johnson drove the ball long and straight and was bogey-free for 17 holes. His tee shot on the par-three ninth, his last, ended up in the rough but he played a remarkable second that snaked up and down and across the green and left him a 15-foot par putt. The American missed it but signed for a five-under 65.
Sweden’s Stenson, who is looking to become the fifth European winner of the title in the past six years, had three birdies and two bogeys on his front nine before his late charge of four birdies in his final five holes catapulted the world number six into a share of the lead.
McIlroy and Mickleson
Northern Ireland’s McIlroy looked set for a solid opening round after mixing two birdies and two bogeys on his front nine and following that with a run of eight pars. But two bogeys in his final three holes saw the 2011 champion drop seven shots off the pace.
Six-time runner-up Phil Mickelson made a solid start as he continues his quest to win the one major to elude him so far. The 45-year-old was three under par after eight holes but three bogeys around a solitary birdie on the back nine checked his progress.
How are the Brits doing?
Not great but most remain in contention. Scotland’s Warren had four birdies and two bogeys in a two-under 68, while 51-year-old compatriot Colin Montgomerie (see below) had a one-under 69.
Everyone else is over par. Rose, started with a birdie and was one under on the 15th tee but three bogeys in his last four holes dropped him to two over.
Also on two over are Paul Casey, who dropped three shots on his back nine, and Ian Poulter, who had three birdies and three bogeys after a double bogey opening hole.
Luke Donald and Lee Westwood were never under par in rounds of 73.
Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell, the 2010 US Open champion, and Jamie Donaldson of Wales had four-over 74s.
Cole Hammer, born this century, became the third youngest player to qualify for the US Open. The 15-year-old fought back the tears on the 10th tee, his first hole, but went on to par it. However, there was no fairytale for the kid from Houston, who only entered qualifying for a laugh. Five bogeys and a double left him at seven over.
Montgomerie, the man with five runners-up spots in the majors, three times at the US Open, fired a one-under-par 69 to put himself in contention. The 51-year-old US Senior Open champion had four birdies and three bogeys in a round that saw him miss several birdie putts.
The good, the bad, the ugly
Masters champion Jordan Spieth mixed four birdies with two bogeys to put himself in the thick of it on two under.
Colombia’s Camilo Villegas opened with two birdies but had a triple-bogey seven at the next after taking four shots to get out of a greenside bunker.
Rich Berberian Jr of the USA props up the 156-strong field after four double bogeys and five bogeys in his 13-over-par 83.
Quotes of the day
Tiger Woods looks for positives from his round: “The bright side is at least I kicked Rickie’s butt today.” Playing partner Rickie Fowler had an 11-over-par 81.
Scotland’s Colin Montgomerie: “Can I win? Have stranger things happened? What Tom Watson did at Turnberry aged 59 [losing a play-off for the 2009 Open] has given everybody over 50 hope.”
Joint leader Henrik Stenson on the injury suffered by his caddie, Gareth Lord, on Wednesday: “He’s not in a good place with the hand, but he managed to caddie and did a good job. I had to caddie for him a little bit, as well. It’s definitely dangerous with those slopes, and the grass gets shiny and lays down. It gets a bit like ice skating out there.”
America’s Phil Mickelson: “Everyone in the field is going to struggle with three- to eight-foot putts when they are downhill because you can’t hit it hard enough to hold the line and there is a lot of wiggle.”
Spaniard Sergio Garcia after a level-par 70: “The greens are as bad as they look on TV.”