After his outstanding first round, all eyes were on Phil Mickelson to see if he could produce something similar on the second day of The Open. And while his second round wasn’t as spectacular as his first, Mickelson still sits in a strong position at the half-way stage of the tournament.
Mickelson posted a second round two-under-par, to move to ten-under for the tournament. However, while the first day undoubtedly belonged to the American, day two belonged to Swede Henrik Stenson. Stenson, yet to win a Major, is just one shot behind Mickelson on nine-under-par after going round the course in just 65 shots on day two, with some excellent putting helping him to the best score of the day.
Soren Kjeldesen remains in third place, but the Dane is now just three shots off the lead and will be hoping to close the gap further on Mickelson over the weekend. He shot a round of three-under-par to keep himself in contention. Keegan Bradley is level with Kjeldsen after he matched the Dane’s round.
Defending champion Zach Johnson is right in the mix after moving to five-under-par after round two. Charles Schwartzel had an excellent second round, going round in 66 shots, to put the South African on four-under for the tournament. He is joined on the score by Americans Bill Haas and Tony Finau, who would both be surprised winners if they ended the week with the trophy. Englishman Andrew Johnston and Spaniard Sergio Garcia are also on four-under.
Martin Kaymer had a poor second round and will have to pull out all the stops to move back up the leaderboard. He is now on three-under after shooting a second round 73. Patrick Reed and Dustin Johnson will be disappointed with their efforts, with both being on two-under-par and eight shots behind Mickelson.
Rory McIlroy again threatened to make a charge up the leaderboard, and while he isn’t out of the running, he will be disappoint ted to remain on two-under-par. World Number One Jason Day is on one-over-par for the tournament, while Jordan Spieth, Danny Willett and Bubba Watson have only just made the cut, with the trio being on four-over-par. While they will continue to play over the weekend, it looks unlikely that any of them will make an impression at the top of the leaderboard.
Several big names have missed the cut, including Paul Casey, Bernd Wiesberger and Louis Oosthuizen. However, Matthew Southgate has made it through after finishing his first two rounds on level par, while Luke Donald, Justin Rose and Lee Westwood have also done enough to continue to play over the weekend.
With Mickelson’s lead shortening, the third day will be crucial to see who will be challenging on the final day. With so many top quality players still in the field and the weather expected to worsen over weekend, anything can still happen.