Kite looks back on windy final round at Pebble

Record smashing Thomas grabs US Open lead

Record smashing Thomas grabs US Open lead

The final round of the U.S. Open will begin with the top 16 places on the leaderboard all occupied by players who have yet to win a major. His score in relation to par 9 under was a U.S. Open record, and he finished the day at 11 under.

It was a much different scene than Saturday, when Thomas matched a major record with a 63.

At that point, he was leading by seven shots. Brian Harman, who had the lead coming into the day, made a long birdie putt on No. 3 to join Koepka on top. And yet, Thomas won't even walk to the first tee box Sunday with the lead.

Fleetwood picked up a victory in Abu Dhabi on the European Tour while Rickie Fowler, who will start two behind the pacesetter, is widely regarded as the current best golfer not to have won a major.

Harman, who is playing his first major since missing the cut in all four in 2015, fired six birdies and one bogey in a 67 to claim pole position in his bid to become the first left-handed victor of the US Open. He finished at 12-under 272, the first player to complete a U.S. Open double digits under par.

He had a six-shot lead at the turn but hit only three fairways on the nine and missed a 4-foot par putt on the 18th for a 70.

The Englishman heads into the final round in a three-way tie for second alongside Justin Thomas and Brooks Koepka, with the trio now one behind Brian Harman on 12-under.

Kaymer got the good end of the draw when rain arrived at Pinehurst No. 2, and he opened with rounds of 65-65 to reach 10-under 130 and build a six-shot lead going into the weekend. He shot 81 the next day in a blustery wind. He two-putted for birdie, and he rolled in a 25-foot birdie putt on the 17th.

Tom Kite carded a closing 72 to win by two shots from Jeff Sluman, with 20 of the 66-man field shooting in the 80s to contribute to a scoring average of 77.2.

"I think since my dad dropped me off at football practice and told me to not be disappointed if I didn't get to play at all", Harman said, drawing laughs.

Thomas had 300 yards to the hole for his second shot at the 18th.

But birdies will be harder to come by on Sunday with winds gusting from 25-30 miles per hour (40-48 kph), bending flag sticks and moving balls over hardening greens.

On an Erin Hills course that again lacked enough wind to be the stern test the U.S. Open wants, Brian Harman weaved his way through traffic at the top of the leaderboard Saturday for a 5-under 67 and a one-shot lead over Thomas, Brooks Koepka and Tommy Fleetwood.

Of the 24 players on the course early, only two are under par for the day - William McGirt and Jordan Spieth.

A three-time victor on the PGA Tour this season, Thomas also joined the exclusive "59" club by breaking 60 at the Sony Open, but he may have saved his best for Father's Day weekend and his quest for his first major crown.

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