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Rory McIlroy needed a prayer to save par on the fifth hole of the US Open at The Country Club in Brookline, Massachusetts, in Thursday’s first round.
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McIlroy hit one of his shots on the par 4 fifth hole into the rough and it didn’t look like it was going to end well for the Northern Irishman. He hit his shot from the rough into a bunker and then somehow got his bunker shot onto the green.
To save par, McIlroy needed to nail a long putt. He did exactly that.
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It was his 11th pair to that point, as the two-time defending RBC Canadian Open champion was in contention for the US Open lead as the first round of the tournament ended.
McIlroy is seeking his first major championship victory since 2014 when he won the PGA Championship and the Open Championship in the same year. He hasn’t won the US Open since 2011.
But he had a lot of momentum going into this year’s US Open. He finished second at the Masters, fifth at the Wells Fargo Championship, eighth at the PGA Championship and tied for 18th at the Memorial before winning the RBC Canadian Open. He looks like he must win a big victory.
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He was chasing Callum Tarren, who finished his first round 3-under and in the lead. Tarren missed the cut in her first US Open appearance and is in good shape to make the cut thus far at this year’s event.