South African Charl Schwartzel, the 2011 Masters champion, and Britain’s Ian Poulter shared the early lead on Thursday in the 113th US Open at Merion, each of them on three-under par. Poulter started his round at the par-4 11th, used rather than the 10th due to the logistics of the course, and promptly jumped atop the leaderboard with three birdies in a row. The 37-year-old stumbled with a bogey at 14 but birdied the 15th.
South Africa’s Tim Clark and Australian Jason Day were on two-under early, Clark with birdies at 12 and 13 and Day with birdies on the 13th and 15th.
Those on one-under included Phil Mickelson, who arrived at Merion at 5:37 in the morning after a cross-country flight from Southern California. He skipped two days of Merion practice to attend his daughter’s eighth-grade graduation, but made his 7:11 a.m. tee time.