Thomas Pieters joins the group in a tie for second. He finds the long par-five 4th in two big bogeys, only to leave a long eagle putt a worrying five feet short. But he knocks in the birdie bet and moves to -3. Meanwhile, back-to-back birdies for Max Homa at 11 and 12, and one of the hipsters’ pre-tournament picks goes into the red at -1. Less than an hour into the second round, and things are already bubbling up.
Hayden Buckley has only played in one major championship before. The 27-year-old from Chattanooga, Tennessee did pretty well at it: tied for 14th at last year’s US Open. He’s had a couple of nice finishes recently, too: a top-ten finish at the Texas Open and a tie for fifth at the RBC Heritage. He seems to be taking the good form into the PGA. A 69 yesterday, and after a slow start today with bogeys on 11 and 12, he has responded with three straight birdies between 13 and 15. He is -2 overall.
The Michael Block party continues. One of the “PGA Team of 20” club pros in the field this week, the 46-year-old is currently taming the Oak Hill tiger. He calmly hits his tee shot on the short par-four 14th in the middle, marks to eight feet and sets up for his third birdie of the morning. He’s a shot from the lead! Meanwhile, the pair open for DJ, whose 12-foot birdie putt on 10 lips out to the right. So close to a share.
-3: Block (5*), D Johnson (1*), Cole, Conners, Scheffler
-2: Davis (6*), Pieters (3), Mitchell (3), Bradley, Hovland, Fox
Thomas Pieters made his way back to the clubhouse last night propelled by parps of purest ear steam. The occasionally hot-headed Belgian went nicely at -3 with three holes to play, only to drop shots on 7 and 9 with his face on. But he’s probably gotten things into proportion since – surely he would have shot an opening round of 69 given his early LIV travails – and he’s come out today with a new spring in his step and a birdie at 3. He’s -2 .
Cam Davis has no record in the majors to speak of, but he finished sixth in the Players this year. The 28-year-old Australian followed that up with a tie for seventh at the recent RBC Heritage, just four from eventual winner Matt Fitzpatrick, and he makes his move here today. A 71 yesterday and now three birdies in a row on 13, 14 and 15. He is -2.
Tom Kim’s all-out attempt to top up his social media bonus last night may have taken a toll. An opening bogey on 1 and he slips to +4. But it’s an opening birdie for Tony Finau at 10. If there’s ever a man trending in the right direction, it’s the big 33-year-old from Salt Lake City, Utah. After going out for 41 strokes yesterday, he responded to that nightmare by coming back for 31. There’s no point in wasting such card-saving brilliance, and today’s fast start takes him up to +1. Many will have written him off yesterday. Ahem. Watch now!
So here we are right now at the top of the leaderboard. Keith Mitchell – currently world number one in overall driving (distance plus accuracy) – has birdied 2 to get seriously involved here. You know what, that total drive could very well stand him in good stead on this US Open-style course. Especially when the wind comes up later. Anyway, everything caught up, pretty much. (wiping eyebrows histrionicly)
-3: Scheffler, Conners, D Johnson, Cole
-2: Block (4*), Mitchell (2), Bradley, Hovland, Fox, Scott
-1: Straka (3), Pieters (2), Rose, Suh
A 46-year-old club professional is making a big step this morning. Michael Block is playing in his fifth PGA Championship — he’s also played it at two US Opens — as a busman’s vacation from his day job at Arroyo Trabuco Golf Club in Mission Viejo, California. He shot a nice 70 yesterday, came back with birdies on 12, 13 and 16, and he’s on a similar roll this morning. Birdies at 10 and 12, and he moves to -2, just two off Bryson DeChambeau’s lead.
An up and down early start for Justin Rose. He made a three-putt bogey on 16, but bounced back with a chip-in at the last to sign for a 69. But Phil Mickelson wasn’t as skilled around 18, and a chunked chip led to a double bogey and a round of 73.
The 6th hole claimed Tom Kim as a victim in the gloaming yesterday; it is claimed by the night’s host Eric Cole at dawn. Cole had crashed his tee at 6 o’clock in the middle last night and then opted to mark his ball as the horn went to end the day’s play. He might wish he had finished the hole, which was his right, as his first shot this morning was a big pull at Allens Creek. That led to a double-bogey sixth. He parried home after that though, signing for a three-under 67.
Yesterday didn’t quite go according to plan – certainly not for the extraordinarily entertaining golfer-cum-explorer Tom Kim — but it looks like the 105th PGA Championship is back on track after yesterday’s frost delay. A few players, including surprise overnight leader Eric Cole, still have a few holes left in their first rounds to play, but they need to make a quick turnaround for the second round, which looks set to go as planned. This is what the top of the scoreboard looked like at sunset yesterday…
-5: Cole (14*)
-4: DeChambeau (F)
-3: Scheffler (F), Conners (F), D Johnson (F)
-2: Fox (F), Hovland (F), Bradley (F), Scott (F)
… and here are today’s start times. All the latest comes instantly. It’s on!
From the 1st (all times BST)…
12:00 p.m.: Sam Ryder, Gabe Reynolds, Brandon Wu
12.11: Sadom Kaewkanjana, Ben Kern, Thorbjorn Olesen
12.22: Webb Simpson, YE Yang, Danny Willett
12.33: Sepp Straka, Harris English, Robert MacIntyre
12.44: Thomas Pieters, Keith Mitchell, Pablo Larrazabal
12.55: Lucas Herbert, Brian Harman, Callum Shinkwin
13.06: Tom Kim, Sam Burns, Abraham Ancer
13.17: Im Sung-jae, Chris Kirk, Seamus Power
13.28: Kim Si-woo, Stephan Jaeger, Anirban Lahiri
13.39: Victor Perez, Aaron Wise, Jordan Smith
13.50: Chris Sanger, JJ Spaun, David Micheluzzi
14.01: Thomas Detry, JJ Killeen, Matt Wallace
14.12: Nick Hardy, Gary Koch, Eric Cole
17.30: Trey Mullinax, Josh Speight, Kazuki Higa
17.41: Adam Schenk, Colin Inglis, Thriston Lawrence
17.52: Min Woo Lee, Andrew Putnam, Emiliano Grillo
18.03: Harold Varner III, Scott Stallings, Nicolai Hojgaard
18.14: Steve Holmes, Adrian Otaegui, Davis Riley
18.25: Scottie Scheffler, Brooks Koepka, Gary Woodland
18.36: Rory McIlroy, Justin Thomas, Collin Morikawa
18.47: Jordan Spieth, Shane Lowry, Viktor Hovland
18.58: Jon Rahm, Matt Fitzpatrick, Cameron Smith
19.09: Luke Donald, Adrian Meronk, Yannik Paul
19.20: Kenny Pigman, Davis Thompson, Maverick McNealy
19.31: Keegan Bradley, Jason Day, Bryson DeChambeau
19.42: Jesse Droemer, Matt NeSmith, Rikuya Hoshino
… and from the 10th …
12.05: Matt Cahill, Taylor Montgomery, Cam Davis
12.16: Michael Block, Hayden Buckley, Taylor Pendrith
12.27: Alex Beach, Brendon Todd, Sihwan Kim
12.38: Patrick Reed, Rasmus Höggaard, Nick Taylor
12.49: Christiaan Bezuidenhout, John Somers, Chez Reavie
1pm: Tommy Fleetwood, Cameron Young, Hideki Matsuyama
13.11: Adam Scott, Max Homa, Tony Finau
13.22: Xander Schauffele, Tyrrell Hatton, Dustin Johnson
1.33pm: Patrick Cantlay, Rickie Fowler, Phil Mickelson
1.44pm: Alex Smalley, Russell Henley, Mito Pereira
1.55pm: Adam Hadwin, Matt Kuchar, Talor Gooch
14.06: Justin Rose, Billy Horschel, Francesco Molinari
2.17pm: Russell Grove, Patrick Rodgers, Ben Taylor
5.25pm: Shaun Micheel, Braden Shattuck, Steven Alker
17.36: Ben Griffin, Chris French, Joel Dahmen
17.47: Wyatt Worthington II, Nico Echavarria, Wyndham Clark
5.58pm: Tom Hoge, Ryan Fox, KH Lee
18.09: Paul Casey, Adam Svensson, Beau Hossler
18.20: Zach Johnson, Kurt Kitayama, Sahith Theegala
18.31: Corey Conners, Ockie Strydom, Joaquin Niemann
18.42: Kevin Kisner, Jimmy Walker, Padraig Harrington
18.53: Alex Noren, JT Poston, Mackenzie Hughes
7.04pm: Lee Hodges, Callum Tarren, David Lingmerth
7.15pm: Taylor Moore, Denny McCarthy, Brendan Steele
19.26: Jeremy Wells, Justin Suh, Adri Arnaus
19.37: Anthony Cordes, Mark Hubbard, Dean Burmester