Kaymer stretches lead to six strokes

Martin Kaymer, playing flawless golf, took advantage of a rain-softened Pinehurst layout in record style to stretch his US Open lead to a commanding six shots after Friday’s second round.

The 29-year-old German, three ahead overnight after opening with a five-under 65 that he described as “exceptional”, followed up with the same score to post a tournament low 10-under total of 130 in the second major of the season.

Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy had set the previous lowest score after 36 holes with an aggregate of 131 on the way to a runaway victory in the 2011 US Open at Congressional.
Kaymer’s six-stroke advantage matched the largest US Open lead after 36 holes, emulating Tiger Woods at Pebble Beach in 2000 and McIlroy in 2011.

When Kaymer concluded his round after teeing off on a sunny but relatively calm morning at Pinehurst, he was eight shots in front of his closest pursuers but, by the time play ended for the day, American Brendon Todd had trimmed that by two.

Todd, who clinched his maiden PGA Tour title at the Byron Nelson Championship four weeks ago, carded a bogey-free 67 in the afternoon to finish alone at four-under.

Americans Kevin Na (69) and Brandt Snedeker (68) were a further stroke back but virtually every player in the field will be keeping at least one eye on Kaymer over the weekend as the runaway leader bids to win his second major title.

Kapur makes cut

Not even a crippling triple bogey on the stretch back home could stop India’s Shiv Kapur from making the midway cut.

Kapur, who was three-under for the day through 15 holes, made a triple on the par-4 16th, but kept control of his nerves to finish with pars and a card of even-par 70 after a first round 73.

At three-over 143, Kapur was tied 33rd to become only the second Indian, after Jeev Milkha Singh to make the cut in an US Open.

Leading scores (after 36 holes, US unless mentioned): 130: Martin Kaymer (Ger, 65, 65); 136: Brendon Todd (69, 67); 137: Kevin NA (68, 69), Brandt Snedekar (69, 68); 138: Brooks Koepka (70, 68), Dutin Johnson (69, 69); Brendon de Jonge (Zim, 68, 70), Keegan Bradley (69, 69), Henrik Stenson (69, 69).

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