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Friday, 14 June 2013 01:02

Luke Donald Leads as US Open Halted, Mickelson Clubhouse Leader

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The first round of the US Open started a little late due to major rain, but Luke Donald has a one shot lead over clubhouse leader Phil Mickelson as play was halted for the day at Merion.

Donald is at -4 through 14 holes, but the story of the day was Mickelson's round and the hectic day he has had. Mickelson's -3 is the second lowest opening US Open round he has had, but has never won the prestigious tournament. On a course that was very wet and soggy, Mickelson performed rather well, recording four birdies to just one bogey.

Even more surprising was what Mickelson went through just to play today. Mickelson returned back home to California earlier in the week for his daughter's eighth grade graduation and didn't arrive in Pennsylvania until very early Thursday morning. Playing partner Keegan Bradley said of Mickelson,

"He's had a crazy last 24 hours. Sometimes that helps, not thinking about it. He's going to get rest and he'll be in great shape.

"He played very well. He missed the fairway and laid up. Is putting awesome, made a couple of ridiculous up-and-downs, is playing well."

Luke Donald, the 35 year old Briton, so far has had a really solid round. Donald has recorded five birdies to just one bogey and birdied his last three holes before play was suspended due to darkness.

Donald said of his great start,

“I'm excited to get off to a great start. I made a great putt on 1, another good birdie on 3, and then just played the holes like they should be played. I feel like I'm in pretty good control of my game, and it's nice to get off to such a good start.”

Mickelson and Nicolas Colsaerts, at -1, are the top two clubhouse leaders with numerous golfers still to complete their first round. Masters champion Adam Scott is one back from Donald through 11 holes and defending US Open champion Webb Simpson just two back from Donald through only eight holes.

Tiger Woods is struggling at +2 through 10 and some other notable scores include: Rory McIlroy at even par through 11 holes and Sergio Garcia, as one of the few to complete their round, at +3.