Jordan Spieth boosted his chances of completing the career Grand Slam with a magnificent second round at the US PGA Championship.
The American came home in just 31 strokes and a four-under-par 66 left him on five under for the tournament, just two shots shy of first-round leader Brooks Koepka, who was set to start his round at 1.49pm local time.
Spieth has been plagued by inconsistency over the past 18 months but a trademark surge on the back nine at Bethpage Black moved him firmly into contention.
Starting at the 10th, Spieth was level par through his first nine holes but birdies at the first and fourth were followed by additional gains at the seventh and eighth – the latter courtesy of a monster putt from 39 feet.
— PGA Championship (@PGAChampionship) May 17, 2019
World number one Dustin Johnson shot a three-under 67 and he was just three shots behind Koepka, at four under for the tournament alongside Daniel Berger.
Rory McIlroy made a shocking start that saw him go five over through his first three holes.
The Northern Irishman made a recovery on his back nine, though, and finished at three over for the tournament – just inside the projected cut line.
Jon Rahm faces the possibility of missing the weekend after the Spaniard signed for a poor 75 that left him five over through two rounds.
Veteran Rich Beem, who now works mainly as a pundit, rolled back the years. He came home in just 30 strokes and at four over for the tournament may still make the weekend.
Jordan Spieth’s score of 135 is his fourth career opening 36-hole score of 135 or better in a major championship. He went on to win in each of the previous three instances.
130, 2015 Masters Tournament
135, 2015 U.S. Open
134, 2017 The Open Championship
— PGA TOUR Communications (@PGATOURComms) May 17, 2019
Tiger Woods was due to tee off with Koepka and was seeking a fast start after a two-over 72 on Thursday.