Rory McIlroy four off the lead after red-hot 63 at Riviera

McIlroy four behind Justin Thomas and Adam Scott at rain-hit Genesis Open

Rory McIlroy has moved into contention at the Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club. Photograph: Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images

Rory McIlroy has moved into contention at the Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club. Photograph: Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images

 

Rory McIlroy fired his way into contention at the Genesis Open in California on Saturday, completing a brilliant second round of eight-under 63 to move within four shots of leaders Justin Thomas and Adam Scott.

Returning to the Riviera Country Club early in the morning to complete his second round in the rain-affected tournament, McIlroy carded four birdies in the six holes he had left, starting with a birdie two on the par-three fourth hole when he slotted home a putt from 20 feet.

His putter got even hotter on the next hole when he held a tricky downhill effort from 35 feet, his sixth birdie of the round moving him to five under after he carded a one-over 72 in his opening round.

A par at the short sixth hole stopped the run but he saved his best shot for the seventh when he almost holed his approach, before tapping in for another birdie.

He completed his gains for the round on the eighth hole with another brilliant putt from just outside 30 feet for a fifth birdie on his back nine as he came home in 30 shots to move to seven under.

Thomas could only manage one birdie over the six holes but a 65 to add to his opening 66 moved him to 11 under and a share of the clubhouse lead alongside Australia’s Adam Scott, who also added a 65 to an opening 66.

Justin Thomas shares the lead in California. Photograph: Harry How/Getty
Justin Thomas shares the lead in California. Photograph: Harry How/Getty

They’re trailed by JB Holmes at 10 under, Patrick Rodgers and Michael Thompson at nine under and Tony Finau and Jordan Spieth at eight.

After his opening 64, Spieth could only manage a 70 in the second round with four birdies offset by three bogeys.

With the tournament schedule well behind after a delay of around seven hours on the opening day, the second round was only completed by shortly after 2.30pm local time (10.30pm Irish time) on Saturday.

After a re-draw and groups of three beginning on both the first and 10th tees, the third round got underway at 3pm (11pm Irish time). McIlroy partners Spieth and Kyle Jones with a tee time of 4.40pm (12.40pm Irish time). With sunset expected around 5.30pm (1.30am Irish time) and the final group of Thomas, Scott and Holmes teeing off only half an hour prior to that there will be plenty more catching up to do on Sunday morning but it is hoped that, weather permitting, the tournament will finish on Sunday evening as scheduled.

Following an anxious wait, Séamus Power made the cut right on the mark of level par. The Waterford golfer dropped a shot on his return to the course on Saturday morning to complete a second round of one-over 72 but that was just about enough to make it into the final two rounds for only the second time in 10 appearances this season.

A closing birdie was also enough for Tiger Woods to make the cut, a level-par round of 71 leaving him on one under and 10 shots off the lead at the tournament where he made his debut as a 16-year-old in 1992 but one he has never won.

Collated second round scores & totals in the USPGA Tour Genesis Open, Riviera CC, Pacific Palisades, California, United States of America (USA unless stated, par 71):

131 (-11) Justin Thomas 66 65, Adam Scott (Aus) 66 65

132 (-10) J.B. Holmes 63 69

133 (-9) Michael Thompson 69 64, Patrick Rodgers 66 67

134 (-8) Tony Finau 66 68, Jordan Spieth 64 70

135 (-7) Rory McIlroy (NIrl) 72 63, Kyle Jones 68 67

136 (-6) Vaughn Taylor 67 69, Paul Casey (Eng) 70 66, Bubba Watson 70 66

137 (-5) JT Poston 67 70, Luke List 71 66, Joaquin Niemann (Chi) 71 66, Jon Rahm (Spa) 67 70, Beau Hossler 68 69, Kelly Kraft 69 68

138 (-4) Marc Leishman (Aus) 69 69, Bryson DeChambeau 70 68, Charles Howell III 69 69, Si Woo Kim (Kor) 68 70

139 (-3) Brian Stuard 69 70, Patrick Cantlay 68 71, Jonas Blixt (Swe) 71 68, Dustin Johnson 73 66, Scott Langley 69 70, Max Homa 69 70, Bill Haas 67 72, Ted Potter, Jr. 70 69, Tommy Fleetwood (Eng) 70 69, Carlos Oritz (Mex) 67 72, Rafael Cabrera-Bello (Spa) 68 71

140 (-2) Kramer Hickok 66 74, Hideki Matsuyama (Jpn) 71 69, Robert Garrigus 69 71, Brian Gay 71 69, Adam Hadwin (Can) 68 72, Martin Kaymer (Ger) 71 69, Sam Ryder 69 71, Davis Love III 69 71, Matt Kuchar 68 72, Brian Harman 69 71, Alex Cejka (Ger) 70 70, Kevin Na 70 70, Keegan Bradley 66 74, Aaron Baddeley (Aus) 69 71, Abraham Ancer (Mex) 69 71, Jim Furyk 67 73, Dylan Frittelli (Rsa) 68 72, Ryan Moore 68 72

141 (-1) Peter Malnati 72 69, Scott Brown 70 71, Tiger Woods 70 71, Sung Kang (Kor) 69 72, Kyoung-hoon Lee (Kor) 72 69, Cody Gribble 71 70, Phil Mickelson 72 69, Cameron Smith (Aus) 72 69, Freddie Jacobson (Swe) 70 71, Richard H. Lee 70 71, Nick Taylor (Can) 70 71

142 (E) Pat Perez 69 73, Jason Kokrak 69 73, Shawn Stefani 72 70, Xander Schauffele 74 68, Danny Willett (Eng) 71 71, Séamus Power (Irl) 70 72, Stephan Jaeger (Ger) 71 71, Peter Uihlein 69 73, Tae Hee Lee (Kor) 68 74, Russell Henley 69 73, Ernie Els (Rsa) 71 71, Sergio Garcia (Spa) 75 67, Cheng-Tsung Pan (Tai) 69 73, Jimmy Walker 67 75

The following players missed that cut:

143 (+1) Andrew Landry 71 72, Cameron Davis (Aus) 72 71, Chase Wright 71 72, Bronson Burgoon 68 75, Robert Streb 72 71, Jim Knous 70 73, Kiradech Aphibarnrat (Tha) 70 73, Ryan Blaum 71 72, Kevin Tway 70 73, John Huh 68 75, Seth Reeves 71 72

144 (+2) Bud Cauley 73 71, Adam Schenk 71 73, Chris Stroud 69 75, Aaron Wise 71 73, John Senden (Aus) 71 73, Sam Saunders 70 74, Harris English 71 73, Vijay Singh (Fij) 71 73, Grayson Murray 70 74, Ollie Schniederjans 74 70, Adam Long 70 74, J.J. Spaun 68 76, Mackenzie Hughes (Can) 72 72

145 (+3) Charley Hoffman 77 68, Harold Varner III 75 70, Scott Stallings 70 75, Anders Albertson 73 72, Danny Lee (Nzl) 72 73, Julian Etulain (Arg) 73 72, Kyle Stanley 71 74, Jason Dufner 70 75, Louis Oosthuizen (Rsa) 75 70, Fred Couples 73 72, Joel Dahmen 72 73, Sang-moon Bae (Kor) 72 73, Tyrrell Hatton (Eng) 70 75, Ryan Armour 72 73, Keith Mitchell 73 72, Sungjae Im (Kor) 76 69

146 (+4) Branden Grace (Rsa) 71 75, Cameron Champ 73 73, Tom Hoge 74 72, Denny McCarthy 75 71, Morgan Hoffmann 71 75, Curtis Luck (Aus) 72 74, Michael Kim 71 75, Kyung Ju Choi (Kor) 75 71, Jhonattan Vegas (Ven) 70 76

147 (+5) Brendan Steele 72 75, Andrew Putnam 72 75, Rod Pampling (Aus) 73 74, Lukas Euler (Ger) 72 75, Kevin Streelman 69 78, Timothy O’Neal 76 71

148 (+6) D.A. Points 74 74, Satoshi Kodaira (Jpn) 74 74, Hudson Swafford 71 77, Sam Burns 75 73, Tyler Duncan 70 78

149 (+7) Hunter Mahan 73 76, Chez Reavie 69 80

150 (+8) Brandon Harkins 77 73

151 (+9) Martin Laird (Sco) 75 76, Michael Block 74 77, Anirban Lahiri (Ind) 76 75

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