British Open: Putnam leads 12 qualifiers

Updated: 04 July 2007 08:00 IST

Michael Putnam was the only player to break par on the North and South courses at Oakland Hills to lead 12 players who made it to the British Open.

British Open: Putnam leads 12 qualifiers

Michigan:

Michael Putnam was the only player to break par on the North and South courses at Oakland Hills to lead 12 players who made it to the British Open in American qualifying on Monday.

The British Open, to be played from July 19-22 at Carnoustie, held 36-hole qualifiers in the United States and Europe as it moved closer to establishing the 156-man field.

Putnam had rounds of 69-67 to finish at 4-under 136, two shots better than Ryan Moore and John Senden. Bob Hope Classic winner Charley Hoffman was among those another shot back.

The biggest rallies belonged to former US Amateur champion Matt Kuchar and Brian Davis of England. Kuchar opened with a 75 and was in the middle of the pack until a 64 in the afternoon to make it by two shots. Davis went 74-65.

Jerry Kelly made par on the final four holes of the South course at Oakland Hills - the course Ben Hogan once called "that Monster" when he won the US Open in 1951 - to shoot 68 and barely get in. Also qualifying were Sean O'Hair and Anders Hultman. Duffy Waldorf, Mark Hensby and Spencer Levin survived a six-man playoff to qualify.

Kevin Streelman, Robert Oppenheim and Steve Allan were eliminated in the playoff for the 12th spot.

Unlike two years ago in the United States, when some 50 players didn't show up at Congressional, 78 players completed their rounds at Oakland Hills.

Tom Pernice Jr, who lost a 54-hole lead at the Buick Open on Sunday, didn't fare much better. He opened with a 76 on the tough South course and couldn't make up enough ground in the afternoon. Also failing to qualify were former US PGA champion Steve Elkington, Pablo Martin, Brad Faxon and Camilo Villegas.

Not many felt worse than free spirit Will MacKenzie, who was at 1 under with two holes to play and easily inside the number to qualify for his first major. But he finished double bogey-double bogey to miss the playoff by two shots.

Four spots at Carnoustie remain available for US PGA Tour players over the next two weeks - the top two not already eligible who finish in a special money list that ends at the AT&T National this week, and the leading player not already exempt who finishes in the top 10 at the AT&T National and the John Deere Classic.

Topics : Golf
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