PGA Championship 2023 LIVE: Leaderboard and latest updates as DeChambeau and Johnson flying

·43 min read
A slimmed down Bryson DeChambeau has started well at Oak Hill  (Getty Images)
A slimmed down Bryson DeChambeau has started well at Oak Hill (Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy battled illness and a poor start to remain in contention for a third US PGA Championship title as Bryson DeChambeau set the clubhouse target at Oak Hill. On a course which has drawn comparisons to Winged Foot, the venue for his US Open triumph in 2020, a slimmed-down DeChambeau still possessed enough power to post six birdies and two bogeys in an opening 66.

Yet the unheralded Eric Cole moved into the lead on five-under just before the klaxon sounded to stop play on Thursday, although he is yet to complete his first round due to frost delaying the start of play. Competing in just his second major at the age of 34, Cole leapfrogged DeChambeau with three straight birdies in the fading light and will resume on the 6th (his 15th) on Friday morning.

Afternoon starters Dustin Johnson (three-under 67) and Adam Scott (two-under 68) also looked set to finish on -4 but made bogey and double bogey respectively at the 18th as they elected to finish the hole after the klaxon had sounded. World No 2 Scottie Scheffler and Corey Conners were alongside Johnson at -3 having completed their rounds earlier in the day, with Viktor Hovland, Ryan Fox and Keegan Bradley on two-under-par alongside a disappointed Scott.

McIlroy fought back from three over par after nine holes to return a 71, while Masters champion and world No 1 Jon Rahm surprisingly slumped to a six-over-par 76.

Follow all the action from the 105th US PGA Championship:

US PGA Championship 2023

  • The 105th US PGA Championship kicks off at Oak Hill Country Club in New York

  • Frost delays start of opening round and some players will have to complete their round on Friday, including leader Eric Cole (-5)

  • A slimmed-down Bryson DeChambeau has the clubhouse lead at -4 after a brilliant round of 66

  • Scottie Scheffler and Dustin Johnson start well at -3 but fellow early starters Rory McIlroy (+1) and Jon Rahm (+6) struggle

  • Leaderboard: -5: Cole

  • -4: DeChambeau (F),

  • -3: Scheffler (F), Conners (F), D Johnson (F)

  • -2: Hovland (F), Bradley (F), Fox (F), Scott (F)

  • -1: Suh (F), Buckley (F), Straka (F), Larrazabal (F), Mitchell (F), Pieters (F), Perez, Hadwin, Rose, Rodgers

  • Others: McIlroy (+1), Morikawa (+1), Thomas (+2), Koepka (+2), Spieth (+3), Rahm (+6)

Rory McIlroy ‘fighting something’ at US PGA as slimmed-down Bryson DeChambeau impresses

02:00 , Luke Baker

Rory McIlroy battled illness and a poor start to remain in contention for a third US PGA Championship title as Bryson DeChambeau set the clubhouse target at Oak Hill.

On a course which has drawn comparisons to Winged Foot, the venue for his US Open triumph in 2020, a slimmed-down DeChambeau still possessed enough power to post six birdies and two bogeys in an opening 66.

Yet the unheralded Eric Cole moved into the lead on five-under just before the klaxon sounded to stop play, although he is yet to complete his round due to frost delaying the start of play. Competing in just his second major at the age of 34, Cole leapfrogged DeChambeau with three straight birdies in the fading light and will resume on the 6th (his 15th) on Friday morning.

Afternoon starters Dustin Johnson and Adam Scott also looked set to finish on -4 but dropped shots at the 18th as they elected to finish the hole after the klaxon had sounded. Johnson was flawless in making four birdies and no bogeys before a par putt slipped wide at 18 for a dropped shot that meant a three-under round of 67. Meanwhile, after making five birdies and one bogey through 17 holes, Scott had a disaster on 18 as he took two shots to get out of the bunker and carded a double bogey for a two-under round of 68, suddenly three behind the leader.

World No 2 Scottie Scheffler and Corey Conners were alongside Johnson at -3 having completed their rounds earlier in the day, with Viktor Hovland, Ryan Fox and Keegan Bradley on two-under-par alongside a disappointed Scott.

McIlroy fought back from three over par after nine holes to return a 71, while Masters champion and world No 1 Jon Rahm surprisingly slumped to a six-over-par 76.

Rory McIlroy ‘fighting something’ at US PGA as slimmed-down Bryson DeChambeau leads

US PGA Championship 2023

01:50 , Luke Baker

Leader Eric Cole has picked up his ball on the 6th (his 15th) and will resume in the morning but Dustin Johnson is completing the 18th. He goes into the bunker off the tee, then into greenside rough.

It’s a horrible lie, well below the green but he does a decent job of giving himself an outside look at par with a 15-footer. Good shot from there.

Good roll on the putt but it slips by to the right. A shot dropped at the end by Johnson who ends on -3, a round of 67, two behind Cole and one behind DeChambeau.

US PGA Championship 2023

01:39 , Luke Baker

Scott can’t make the bogey as it comes up just short. It’s a double bogey and he drops from -4 to -2 in one fell swoop. Ouch. Signs for a round of 68 but it could’ve been so much better.

US PGA Championship 2023

01:34 , Luke Baker

Oh no Adam Scott. The klaxon has sounded but players can complete the holes they’re on. He’s in a bunker by the 18th green and he fails to get out...

His second attempt (his fourth shot) dribbles out and he’s probably got a 15-footer for bogey.

US PGA Championship 2023

01:27 , Luke Baker

Here’s how Eric Cole took the lead at the US PGA.

US PGA Championship 2023

01:26 , Luke Baker

Safe shot on to the green from the tee at the par-three 5th from Cole. Lags the birdie putt up and taps in for par. Maintains his one-shot lead.

US PGA Championship 2023

01:23 , Luke Baker

The klaxon hasn’t quite sounded yet, so the vmen towards the top are still playing. Johnson finds another bunker on 17 near the green, so another up and down required.

Scott made a drama-free par at the 17th just before, so he’s heading to the last as part of that -4 group, one stroke behind Cole.

US PGA Championship 2023

01:14 , Luke Baker

Wow! We’ll have a new leader overnight. Eric Cole just about has time to tidy up one final birdie on the 13th. He’s still got five holes to play but it’s three birdies on the spin to be the only man to reach -5!

Both his mother and father were professional golfers but this display is out of nowhere from Cole, making just his second appearance ina major at the age of 34.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

US PGA Championship 2023

01:12 , Luke Baker

Phil Mickelson with a long-range birdie attempt on 15. No dice but a safe par to stay at +1.

Dustin Johnson is in a greenside bunker at 16 but escapes with an up and down for par to stay tied at the top. It’s hard to see him completing another hole now, given the fading light. The hooter is likely to be sounded imminently.

US PGA Championship 2023

01:05 , Luke Baker

Here’s Tom Kim’s adventure on the 6th!

US PGA Championship 2023

01:02 , Luke Baker

Ah, that’s a real shame for Sepp Straka. He three-putts the 18th to miss out on a round of 68 and has to settle for a one-under 69. Still very, very good but that last hole will rankle.

Meanwhile, Dustin Johnson tidies up a par on 15 to stay tied for the lead. I reckon we’ve got another 10 or 15 minutes of light left, at the max.

US PGA Championship 2023

01:00 , Luke Baker

Oh Tom Kim - what are you doing?! This is comedic gold! The young Korean superstar emerges from some sort of creek or marsh down the right of the 6th absolutely covered in mud! His legs are just mud, his white shirt is unbelievably dirty but he’s laughing about it.

It looks like he went way right, though he could play his ball but it turned out to be a marsh area rather than hard ground. He has to wash himself off in the creek, take his shirt off and wear his sweater before putting his (presumably drenched) shoes and socks back on. Carnage for Kim! He’s gonna make a bogey as well...

US PGA Championship 2023

Friday 19 May 2023 00:57 , Luke Baker

Make that four men atop the leaderboard! Eric Cole lost the Honda Classic in a playoff to Chris Kirk earlier this season for his best-ever PGA Tour result and the 34-year-old is only competing at his second major this week (after the 2021 US Open) but he’s thriving.

Great tee shot at the par-three 3rd (his 12th) and he nails the putt to climb to -4 alongside Scott, Johnson and DeChambeau! Great stuff

US PGA Championship 2023

Friday 19 May 2023 00:50 , Luke Baker

Talking of turning a round around, Xander Schauffele is back to +1 with another birdie. He was +4 after three holes, remember.

US PGA Championship 2023

Friday 19 May 2023 00:49 , Luke Baker

Scott gives himself a look at another birdie at 15 with a safe tee shot to the centre of the green. Gets his long putter out and rolls a good one towards the hole. Just short but an easy par and he’s on to 16 still tied for the lead.

Further down the leaderboard, Tony Finau has turned his round around. The popular American was +6 at the turn but has conjured up four birdies in five holes! He got up and down out of the front bunker for a birdie at the driveable par-four 14th and then sinks a monster putt on the 15th for the same. He’s at +2 but can he find one more birdie in the final three holes for a really good round?

US PGA Championship 2023

Friday 19 May 2023 00:45 , Luke Baker

And here’s how Scott tied at the top

US PGA Championship 2023

Friday 19 May 2023 00:45 , Luke Baker

Oooh, we have a third name atop the leaderboard! Adam Scott has been playing superbly and he pulls out a birdie with an up-and-down from the bunker at 14 to join DeChambeau and DJ at -4. Superb stuff from the Aussie. It’s a three-way tie now with Scheffler, Conners and Cole a shot back.

 (AP)
(AP)

US PGA Championship 2023

Friday 19 May 2023 00:42 , Luke Baker

A gorgeous iron into the 2nd green from Eric Cole, shaping the ball towards the hole. Leaves himself a look at birdie and finds the cup! A good young player and he moves to -3.

Justin Rose heading into the other direction though as he bogeys the 11th to drop to -1. A hugely eventful day for the Englishman so far.

US PGA Championship 2023

Friday 19 May 2023 00:33 , Luke Baker

For the first time in a long time, we have a new name atop the leaderboard. Dustin Johnson joins DeChambeau on -4. DJ takes advantage of the par-five 13th.

He lays up and flights a wedge towards the hole with his third shot, leaving him a short putt for the birdie. No issue and we’ve got co-leaders. Johnson won’t finish his round before they run out of light but should get another two or three holes in.

US PGA Championship 2023

Friday 19 May 2023 00:13 , Luke Baker

Patrick Cantlay, well-fancied to perhaps break his major duck this week, has had a nightmare couple of holes. a double-bogey 6 at the 10th is followed up with a bogey at the par-three 11th. Suddenly he’s at +4 and a long way back.

His great mate, and fellow first-major searcher Xander Schauffele had a disastrous start but has recovered admirably. He was four-over through three holes but has just birdied the 12th to add to his birdie at 7 to move back up to +2. A par five coming up as well.

US PGA Championship 2023

Friday 19 May 2023 00:07 , Luke Baker

Phil Mickelson, hockey-stick-looking putter in hand, can’t save par at 11 as his putt drifts wide. He falls to +2.

Johnson looks like he hasn’t taken advantage of that brilliant 340-yard drive. Only 83 yards to the flag but his wedge shot is pretty poor to be honest, fails to get the ball back to the top tier of the green and comes up way short. It’s 25 feet or more for birdie, only really an outside chance BUT HE NAILS IT. DJ on the charge! He’s at -3, just one back of fellow LIV golfer Bryson DeChambeau atop the leaderboard.

US PGA Championship 2023

Friday 19 May 2023 00:01 , Luke Baker

Dustin Johnson is absolutely marmalising the ball today. He’s going along very nicely at -2 and rips another HUGE drive down the fairway at 12, fading it around the corner.

He’s looking back toward something like peak DJ - I reckon he fancies it this week, you know. He’s a live chance to win this tournament.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 23:56 , Luke Baker

They’re still battling on as the time reaches 7pm at Oak Hill. Remember, frost delayed the start this morning by the best part of two hours, so we’re not going to get round one completed this evening.

They’ll get as far as they can and then return early tomorrow morning to complete the round before cracking into round two. There may be about another hour of light left.

‘I doubted myself’: Bryson DeChambeau reflects on poor year after flying US PGA start

Thursday 18 May 2023 23:52 , Luke Baker

A year after withdrawing before the start of the US PGA Championship following hand surgery, Bryson DeChambeau set the clubhouse target on a weather-delayed opening day at Oak Hill.

DeChambeau carded six birdies and two bogeys in an opening four-under-par 66 on a course that lived up to comparisons with Winged Foot, the venue for his dominant US Open victory in 2020.

Much has happened to the 29-year-old since then, including a feud with Brooks Koepka, being labelled an eight-year-old by his equipment manufacturer after complaining his driver “sucks” during the Open Championship and abandoning his unhealthy bulking regime.

DeChambeau also joined LIV Golf last year, five months after pledging his loyalty to the PGA Tour, while Thursday’s round included accidentally hitting fellow competitor Kenny Pigman – who was on the 18th tee – with a wild approach to the 17th.

‘I doubted myself’: Bryson DeChambeau reflects on poor year after flying US PGA start

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 23:44 , Luke Baker

There’s been some movement with those chasing DeChambeau. Sepp Straka has joined Scott (as well as clubhouse scorers Scottie Scheffler and Corey Conners) at -3 with a birdie at the par-five 4th (his 13th), Four birdies and one bogey for the Austrian Ryder Cup hopeful today.

A fair few players have moved up to -2 as well. Dustin Johnson is the most notable of those with a tidy birdie at 10 but Hayden Buckley, Thomas Pieters and Eric Cole are also in that group. Justin Rose sees a par putt just slide by the hole to exit that group as he falls to -1.

No one has been able to join DeChambeua at -4 yet though

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 23:27 , Luke Baker

Scott is finding birdies today. At the 10th he pings the ball within a couple of feet of the hole and it’s a kick-in birdie. Lovely stuff for the Aussie as he returns to -3, just one shot back.

Meanwhile, Justin Rose is back up to -2 as he holes out from the bunker! He fancied it, nice hit, right on line and in it goes.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 23:10 , Luke Baker

Adam Scott leaks left with his drive at the 9th and can’t recover enough to save par. It’s a bogey and the veteran Aussie goes back to -2.

Patrick Cantlay has a lot of work left for his par and could be dropping to +1 but there’s better news for Justin Rose who bounces back form that clumsy double bogey with a birdie. Back into the red numbers at -1

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 23:08 , Luke Baker

Here’s how the leaderboard currently looks as the afternoon starters continue their rounds.

  • -4: DeChambeau (F)

  • -3: Scheffler (F), Conners (F), Scott

  • -2: Hovland (F), Bradley (F), Fox (F), Straka, Pieters

  • -1: Suh (F), Davis, Buckley, Larrazabal, Burns, D Johnson, Wise, Horschel, Cole

  • Others: McIlroy (+1), Mickelson (+1), Morikawa (+1), Thomas (+2), Koepka (+2), Rahm (+6)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 23:04 , Luke Baker

Ooof! A double-bogey 5 for Justin Rose at the 5th drops him from -2 back to evens. All that good early work undone in one fell swoop.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 22:59 , Luke Baker

Dustin Johnson getting into the red numbers with a birdie at the 7th. Here’s how he managed it

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 22:52 , Luke Baker

Adam Scott is on a charge now. He has birdied the 8th to move to -3 and is just one stroke behind DeChambeau. He’s driving the ball an absolute mile today, regularly belting the ball 330 yards-plus.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 22:40 , Luke Baker

Sepp Straka dropped a shot but he’s still going along well at -2, while Adam Scott found a second birdie to join him on that score.

Phil Mickelson then watches a shot slip away on the 6th to fall to +1, Patrick Cantlay make a sixth straight par to start his round, Dustin Johnson is also at evens through six but Xander Schauffele is flailing at +4.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 22:13 , Luke Baker

Good work by Justin Rose early on in his round. This is a Donald Ross-designed course and Rose has won at one of those before. He’s showing his liking for the style by birdieing holes 1 and 3 to immediately jump to two-under. A couple of nice putts to get him there

Rory McIlroy ‘fighting something’ at US PGA as slimmed-down Bryson DeChambeau leads

Thursday 18 May 2023 22:09 , Luke Baker

Rory McIlroy battled illness and a poor start to remain in contention for a third US PGA Championship title as Bryson DeChambeau set the clubhouse target at Oak Hill.

On a course which has drawn comparisons to Winged Foot, the venue for his US Open triumph in 2020, a slimmed-down DeChambeau still possessed enough power to post six birdies and two bogeys in an opening 66.

That gave DeChambeau a one-shot lead over world No 2 Scottie Scheffler and Corey Conners, with Viktor Hovland, Ryan Fox and Keegan Bradley on two under par.

McIlroy fought back from three over par after nine holes to return a 71, while Masters champion and world No 1 Jon Rahm surprisingly slumped to a six-over-par 76.

Rory McIlroy ‘fighting something’ at US PGA as slimmed-down Bryson DeChambeau leads

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 22:03 , Luke Baker

Sepp Straka flying early on

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 22:02 , Luke Baker

Solid enough start from Phil Mickelson, who pars each of the first three holes. Playing partner Patrick Cantlay - another who was attracting plenty of betting money in the build-up to this major - has done similar, while the third in that group Rickie Fowler has a couple of early bogeys and is at +2.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 21:59 , Luke Baker

Austrian Sepp Straka has had a flying start. He makes his third birdie of the day at the 16th (his 7th) and climbs to -3, suddenly only one shot off the lead.

Disaster for the very heavily-fancied Tony Finau though. After three pars to start, he bogeyed the 4th - a par-five that he would have been targeting - and then the wheels come off on the 5th. He duffs a pitch and ends up double bogeying, falling to +3. The toughest hole on the course up next as well...

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 21:32 , Luke Baker

Bryson DeChambeau has a look at birdie on the last but doesn’t read the putt well at all. No matter, it’s a simple par and he is the clubhouse leader on his own at -4 after a superb round of 66. Hard to see anyone bettering that by the end of play today.

Keegan Bradley misses his par putt for a round of 68, two strokes back at -2. A disappointing end but a generally superb round by him as well. On the other hand, Jason Day hasn’t enjoyed himself. He won last weekend on the PGA Tour but didn’t have a single practice round at Oak Hill ahead of this championship and it showed... A round of 76 to sit at +6.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 21:23 , Luke Baker

A quick update on some of the other big-name afternoon starters in the early going of their rounds. Patrick Cantlay parred the 1st and found the middle of the fairway on the 2nd.

Tony Finau is ticking along with three pars to begin his round but Max Homa has bogeyed two of his first three to slip to +2. But Australia’s Adam Scott birdied the 3rd to move to -1.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 21:19 , Luke Baker

Bryson DeChambeau and Keegan Bradley coming up the 9th, their final hole today. Bradley misses his third fairway on the spin, leaking it left, while Bryson gets a nice kick out of the right rough on to the fairway.

It’s been quietly solid from DeChambeau today and he’s on the brink of taking the lead into the clubhouse.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 21:16 , Luke Baker

It’s been a bad start for the much-fancies Xander Schauffele. He bogeyed the 1st and things get even worse at the 2nd. He finds the bunker off the tee and hacks his way up to the green and through the back. Eventually he double bogeys and he’s at +3 through two holes...

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 21:12 , Luke Baker

Corey Conners enjoyed day one at the PGA

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 21:02 , Luke Baker

Nice start for the Irishman Seamus Power, who is right in contention to make his Ryder Cup debut come September. He birdies the opening hole to immediately get to -1, something that Chris Kirk also does.

Big-hitting Australian Cam Davis has also made a solid start as he moves to -1 through six holes. Austrian Sepp Straka goes one better as he birdies two of his first three holes to become the first afternoon starter to reach -2.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 20:58 , Luke Baker

A squat of frustration from Bradley as he follows his birdie up with a bogey that shifts him back to -3 and leaves DeChambeau as the sole leader.

The Xander Schauffele, Tyrrell Hatton, Dustin Johnson group have just teed off

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 20:42 , Luke Baker

Viktor Hovland in for a two-under round of 68 with a final par but that’s now two shots off the lead because two men have moved to -4.

Bryson DeChambeau, 20 pounds lighter after finally ending his bulk-up-to-the-extreme experiment, flights a lovely approach into the hard 6th hole. It dances round the flag and leaves him a tap-in birdie.

It’s then a similar story for Keegan Bradley at the same hole. Great approach, good putt and they both move a stroke ahead of SCheffler and Conners.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 20:31 , Luke Baker

Rory McIlroy finishes with a par. It was a rollercoaster round for the Northern Irishman (when is it not!) but he ends on +1, a round of 71. That’s just about still in contention.

Brooks Koepka ended his day on +2 with a 72. Attention is starting to turn to the afternoon starters, which will include the likes of Xander Schauffele, Patrick Cantlay and Justin Rose.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 20:27 , Luke Baker

A disappointing end for Justin Thomas. His par putt on the final hole doesn’t quite fall and it means he ends on +2, a round of 72. He was going along nicely at -1 for so much of his round but faltered towards the end.

It’s similarly bad news on the last for Collin Morikawa. The two-time major winner looks set for a par that would see him end at an even-par 70 but his putt slips by. A one-over 71 for Morikawa who looks disgusted with that finish.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 20:25 , Luke Baker

The wheels have completely come off Jon Rahm. He double bogeys the 7th to slip to +7, alongside the likes of Ockie Strydom, Trey Mullinax and Anthony Cordes... He’s 10 shots off the lead with two holes to play and his championship already looks over.

DeChambeau and Bradley both have looks at birdie and give them a decent rattle but they don’t quite drop. Both men stay at -3

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 20:19 , Luke Baker

Oooh! Close to going in for Viktor Hovland with a putt from off the green. A solid par at his penultimate hole though to stay at -2, one stroke back.

Justin Suh makes a huge putt on 14 to move to -2 alongside Hovland. He birdied the first and had been on a par run ever since. Jordan Spieth cracks a smile as he finally makes a birdie to climb from +3 to +2.

And Corey Conners tidies up at 18 with a neat par to join Scheffler in the clubhouse with a 68. Currently co-leading the championship.

 (AP)
(AP)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 20:15 , Luke Baker

A solid day’s work from Scottie Scheffler. He’ll be delighted with a three-under round of 68

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)
 (USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con)
(USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con)
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 20:12 , Luke Baker

It’s now a four-way tie at the top. A slimmed-down Bryson DeChambeau makes a birdie at the 4th to climb to -3.

Scottie Scheffler pars the last and he’s in the clubhouse at -3, after a round of 67. A good bit of business today from the world No 2. Someone could get to -4 but that’ll be there or thereabouts for the lead by the close of play.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 20:09 , Luke Baker

That’s nice from Rory McIlroy. His penultimate hole of the day, the 8th, is nicely played and he rolls in a birdie putt that pushes him to +1. He’s still in the tournament with that score. Playing partner Justin Thomas also at +1.

The clubhouse leader currently is Ryan Fox - who signed for a round of 68 (-2). Scheffler and Bradley are both playing their final holes sitting at -3 at the moment though.

Thursday 18 May 2023 20:01 , Luke Baker

Here’s a reminder of the top of the leaderboard as it stands - only 10 men under par.

  • Scheffler, Conners, Bradley (-3)

  • Fox, DeChambeau, Hovland (-2)

  • Tarren, Suh, Kaewkanjana, Buckley (-1)

  • Morikawa, Theegala and others (E)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 19:55 , Luke Baker

Scottie Scheffler making moves and joins the party at -3. A nice drive, good iron to follow at the 8th sets him up for the birdie. He joins Conners and Bradley at the top.

Jon Rahm is having a disastrous day though. He’s already at +4 for his round and finds the bunker at the 6th (his 15th) - not a great chip out and he’ll have 30-odd feet to save par. He’s unable to and falls to +5. Unbelievable.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 19:51 , Luke Baker

Some more movement at the top. Keegan Bradley, the 2011 PGA champion, makes a birdie to move to -3 which is now the co-lead after Corey Conners drops a shot at the 16th.

We mentioned Hovland finding the water with his drive at the 6th, although his third shot is a beaut and gives him an outside shot of par. His putt misses but it’s a simple bogey and just one dropped shot - that’s good damage limitation after the disaster off the tee.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 19:43 , Luke Baker

Justin Thomas’s par streak comes to an end and not in a good way as he double bogeys the 6th and drops to +1. The 6th is the hardest hole on the course and Viktor Hovland is also in trouble there shortly after.

His tee shot hooks to the right and lands in the stream, he’ll have to drop miles back and it will be his third shot.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 19:30 , Luke Baker

Here was how Scheffler moved to -2 a little while back, capitalising on a great tee shot.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 19:28 , Luke Baker

We have a new sole leader at the 2023 US PGA Championship. Corey Conners is statistically the best ball-striker on the PGA Tour - topping their ‘strokes gained approach’ category and he makes back-to-back birdies at 14 and 15 to jump from -2 to -4.

A thumping drive at the short par-four 14th allowed him to get up and down for that birdie before a nice iron into the par-three 15th was again taken advantage of with his hot putter.

Meanwhile, Ryan Fox makes a bit of a mess of the 17th and drops a shot to go back to -2, suddenly two shots off the lead.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 19:16 , Luke Baker

The 13th is looking fine at Oak Hill

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 19:16 , Luke Baker

Bad news for Rory McIlroy. He follows back-to-back birdies with a bogey at the par-three 5th. Lets it slip away with a missed putt. However, Justin Thomas keeps his bogey-free round going with another long par putt. He birdied the first and now has 13 pars on the spin trot to stay well in contention at -1.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 19:12 , Luke Baker

A new co-leader at Oak Hill. Viktor Hovland has been on a tear following a slow start and takes full advantage of the par-five 4th, culminating in a birdie putt from inside 10 feet. He joins Ryan Fox on -3 at the top.

Fox should be on -4 after a lovely second shot at the 16th but his bridie putt lips out to groans from the crowd. If he can finish tidily over the last two holes and get into the clubhouse at -3, he’ll be delighted.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 19:09 , Luke Baker

A few players have moved into that group at -2, just one adrift of sole leader Ryan Fox.

Scottie Scheffler birdied the 5th, although he’s found sand from the tee at the 6th, while Keegan Bradley and Bryson DeChambeau both make back-to-back birdies to also go to -2.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 19:07 , Luke Baker

McIlroy made birdie in the end to move to +1 and go back to back. Heading in the right direction at last.

Here’s Rory’s absurd par save from a little earlier that provided the platform for those subsequent birdies

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:57 , Luke Baker

This is what Rory McIlroy is capable of! No-one all day has reached the 617-yard par-five 4th hole green in two shots. Step forward Rory...

He thumps a 347-yard drive down the fairway and a long iron in reaches the green and leaves him a 30-foot look for eagle. Should be a birdie at worst but if he can hole the putt, he’s suddenly at evens...

Playing partner Justin Thomas lays up with his second shot but a lovely wedge leaves him a few feet for birdie. Oh no, he’s missed it wide to the left - a real opportunity gone there. Would’ve taken the defending champ to -2 and just one stroke off the lead.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:52 , Luke Baker

Scheffler scrambles a par at 12 after his tee shot ended up against a tree. Important save as he stays nicely at -1.

Things are looking less good for Jon Rahm though. You may remember he made back-to-back-to-back bogeys a little while ago - well, chalk up another... He can’t pull off a miraculous par save from a similar position off the green to McIlroy at the 2nd (his 11th). So the reigning Masters champion drops to +3.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:48 , Luke Baker

After a double bogey at his 10th, Jordan Spieth has a brilliant look at birdie at 11 but it lips out. Just too much pace. He then follows that with a bogey at his 12th hole, so from being evens at the turn he’s suddenly +3 and his tournament is starting to look in jeopardy.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:45 , Luke Baker

Well that’s one way to make birdie! New Zealand’s Ryan Fox moves to -3, our sole leader, and chuckles disbelievingly to himself. That’s because the son of All Blacks rugby fly-half legend Grant Fox had the sort of shank off the tee that both rugby kickers and golfer dread!

He went way right at the 14th but got a decent lie, somehow muscled the ball on to the green and then made a 20-foot putt for the birdie. Incredible stuff

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:41 , Luke Baker

A patented Rory charge coming? That ludicrous par save might just have inspired him. A gorgeous iron on the par-three 3rd is on the perfect line and feeds towards the hole. Only a few feet left and he taps in the birdie to move to +2 - great response from McIlroy.

Meanwhile, his playing partner Thomas saves par with a 25-footer to stay at -1. Great roll by Justin!

We’ve also got some movement at the top of the leaderboard - Canada’s Corey Conners pulls out a birdie at the 12th to move to -2 and he’s joined by Viktor Hovland. The Norwegian star has recovered brilliantly after bogeying two of the first three holes. He made three birdies on the spin immediately following that and now, at the 2nd (his 11th), he rolls in a fourth birdie.

Theegala can’t make par from 17 feet at 13, meaning he drops back to -1. So it’s Conners, Hovland and Fox top of the pile at -2.

 (USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con)
(USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:29 , Luke Baker

McIlroy’s playing partners also finish off the hole. Justin Thomas safely in with a par to stay at -1 while Collin Morikawa makes a nice putt but it’s for bogey. Back-to-back dropped shots for Morikawa to go to +1

Meanwhile, things are even worse for Jordan Spieth. At the 1st (his 10th) he hooks his drive into a bunker and has to come out sideways. His third shot leave him with a lengthy par putt which comes up a long way short. He then misses the bogey putt and it’s a double-bogey six. Hmmm, a three putt really not what he needed there. Spieth falls to +2

 (USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con)
(USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:24 , Luke Baker

Oh Rory, Rory Rory. A horrible-looking pitch from the front of the green (needing to get up and down to save par), having to flight it over a bunker and land it on a small patch on green. He can’t hold it and it runs off the back, going down a hill and into trouble. More shots will be going here for McIlroy.

OH NO THEY WON’T! He’s holed out! From off the back of the green, putting up a long hill of fringe he gets his line right and the ball races into the hole. Incredible par-save from McIlroy who sports a sheepish grin. Can that spark his round and turn things round? He’s still at +3 remember

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:19 , Luke Baker

Here was that Shane Lowry birdie from off the green using the Texas wedge!

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:18 , Luke Baker

The wind is getting up at Oak Hill and it’s becoming a very testing course. More US Open than US PGA at the moment.

The scores are reflecting that with only two men (Fox and Theegala) at -2 and no-one else better than -1. Some top players in that group one shot behind though including Viktor Hovland, Scottie Scheffler, Justin Thomas and Bryson DeChambeau, who just birdied his 7th hole to move to -1. Ex-leaders Kazuki Higa and Callum Tarren also there.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:14 , Luke Baker

Jon Rahm looking to stop the bleeding after back-to-back bogeys. Nice approach shot into 18 (his 9th) gives him an outside birdie look but should be par at the very least.

Rory McIlroy meanwhile is in trouble at the 1st (his 10th), deep in the right rough and can’t reach the green. He’s already at +3 and can’t afford any more mistakes but will be fighting to save par

Oh hello Shane Lowry! The Irishman putts from off the green, about 60 feet, at the 1st (his 10th) and holes out! A much-needed birdie from the 2019 Open champion after two bogeys in his first nine holes and he’s at +1.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:09 , Luke Baker

Disaster for our surprise leader Kazuki Higa at the 6th (his 15th) as he ends up with a lengthy putt for bogey that comes up short. He taps in but that’s a double-bogey six and he drops back to -1.

After Keegan Bradley double bogeys the par-three 15th to also drop back to -1, Sahith Theegala has sole possession of the lead at -3 through 11.

But that doesn’t last long! A par putt from eight feet or so slips by the hole on the 12th, so he bogeys and drops to -2. Theegala now shares the lead with New Zealander Ryan Fox.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 18:04 , Mike Jones

Jon Rahm is followin Rory McIlroy and moving the wrong way on the leaderboard.

Six feet below the green he tries to wedge his ball in close and it finishes 18 feet short of the hole. The par putt then misses and its successive bogeys for the Masters champ.

He’s now (+2).

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:56 , Mike Jones

A solid first nine holes from Jordan Spieth sees him record a par on the 18th hole. One birdie, one bogey and seven pars for the injured Spieth will make him pleased with the day so far.

A couple of birdies on the back nine and he’s right in contention.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:54 , Mike Jones

18th hole: Rory McIlroy bogeys the 18th sliding a putt down the slope past the lip of the hole. That’s three dropped shots in four holes for the Northern Irishman.

He needs a big front nine to get the round back on track.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:50 , Mike Jones

Corey Connors has dropped back to one under as Sahith Theegala birdies 11 to move into a share of the lead. Things are happening on the leaderboard but it’s not easy to score out there.

On the 15th par-3 Keegan Bradley misses the green and sinks his tee shot into the greenside bunker. It’s stuck pretty deep in the sand too, that’ll be a tricky one to get close.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:45 , Mike Jones

16th hole: Dropped shot!

Jon Rahm pushes his drive into the rough and compounds the error with a second shot that leaves him further in trouble.

His third sends the ball scuttling 15 foot past the hole and the return putt misses the cup. A bogey drops him back to level par for the round.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:41 , Mike Jones

11th hole: Sahith Theegala you beauty! The par-3 11 is one of the holes that rewards aggressive play and punishes tee shots that go slightly wrong.

Theegala targets the pin, lands the ball just short and rolls it up to within a foot. That’s a certain birdie for him, he’ll soon take a share of the lead.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:38 , Mike Jones

18th hole: Collin Morikawa is starting to click into gear. He drills his tee shot into the middle of the fairway on the 18th then follows up with an approach iron that lands smack in the middle of the green.

He’s got a birdie putt coming up but he’ll be slightly disappointed not to be closer.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:34 , Mike Jones

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:29 , Mike Jones

Rory McIlroy’s round is in danger of falling apart. It’s never really got into top gear and a couple of bogeys have put him in the black at (+2) thru eight.

On the 18th tee, McIlroy’s ninth hole of the day, he unleashed the driver but hooks it well wide of the fairway and finds the rough.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:27 , Mike Jones

Cameron Smith makes a fantastic save from a greenside bunker on the short 15th. He went chasing the pin off the tee but got it wrong and ended up in the sand.

A powerful stroke chips the ball into the bank and onto the green leaving him eight feet to save par. Which he does.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:18 , Mike Jones

15th hole: Jon Rahm has a long, slightly right to left putt on the 15th for a birdie. It’s uphill and he nails it but the ball rolls past leaving him with a simple putt for par.

Back on the ninth, Sahith Theegala chips in from the back edge of the green! He’s now (-2) for the day. That’s a great start to his opening round.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:14 , Mike Jones

Here’s Bradley moving to the top of the leaderboard:

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:08 , Mike Jones

13th hole: Take a bow Keegan Bradley!

That’s a lovely shot from the middle right side of the fourth green. A swinging putt from right to left, about 12 feet out from the hole never leaves the middle of the cup and Bradley has a third consecutive birdie.

He joins Kazuki Higa at the top of the leaderboard.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 17:05 , Mike Jones

16th hole: Rory McIlroy is just off the front edge of the green and has a long ranged birdie putt. It would a spectacular shot if it drops but McIlroy gets the pace right and leaves himself with a couple of feet for par. Nice shot.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:58 , Mike Jones

3rd hole: Keegan Bradley shuffles up the leaderboard with back-to-back birdies on the second and third. There’s been talk that the American is in good form and could be a worthy outside bet to come close this week and he’s starting his round in fine fashion.

Bradley is two-under thru three and one shot off the lead.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:56 , Mike Jones

15th hole: Rory McIlroy’s streak of pars comes to an end and not in the way he would have hoped. He thinks there’s a bit of right to left in the his par putt but the ball doesn’t stray off its line and rolls past.

McIlroy moves into the black with his first bogey.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:48 , Mike Jones

A good up-and-down from Kazuki Higa on the 1st hole sees him rescue a par to maintain his position at the top of the leaderboard. The last three holes have been challenging for him but the leader has hung in there well.

Up on the 9th hole Ryan Fox moves to (-2) with a well composed birdie.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:41 , Mike Jones

4th hole: After a steady start Matt Fiztpatrick drops a shot on the fourth. He leaves himself with a 27-footer and fizzes it three feet past.

Jon Rahm and Cameron Smith both settle for pars.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:35 , Mike Jones

18th hole: Kazuki Higa sees out his first nine holes with a comfortable par. He’s three under as he moves onto the front nine, can the man from Japan extend his lead?

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:26 , Mike Jones

14th hole: Finally! Scottie Scheffler has cut a frustrated figure through these first few holes but sinks a 14 footer on the 14th to move into the red for the first time. He’s now one under.

Brooks Koepka follows him in for a birdie of his own to move back to even par.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:24 , Mike Jones

3rd hole: Hello Callum Tarren. The Englishman guides a seven or eight foot putt into the cup on the third to record a second consecutive birdie.

That moevs him into second place.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:15 , Mike Jones

Textbook.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:12 , Mike Jones

The tricky 17th is Kazuki Higa’s undoing thru the back nine and he drops hist first shot of the round. A five brings him a bogey and he drops back to three-under.

The lead drops to two.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:11 , Mike Jones

12th hole: Oh yes! Cameron Smith (-1) gets one to drop on 12 after a serious lenghty putt which traversed most of the green. The ball approached the hole at some lick so it’s a good job it dropped for him.

Up on 13 Collin Morikawa (-1) rolls one in to move into the red too.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:09 , Mike Jones

13th hole: Rory McIlroy navigates another hole where he found the rough and collects his fourth par of the round. He’s playing okay but will want to find more fairways to set up birdie putts.

Justin Thomas rolls in for par on 13 too.

US PGA Championship 2023

Thursday 18 May 2023 16:08 , Mike Jones

Latest leaderboard: *denotes a start from the 10th tee.

Kazuki Higa (-4) thru seven*

Justin Thomas, Jon Rahm, Zach Johnson, Emiliano Grillo, Ryan Fox, K.H. Lee, Scott Stallings, Harold Varner III, Kurt Kitayama, Lee Hodges, Luke Donald, Justin Suh (-1)

Click here to read the full blog on The Independent's website