Patrick Cantlay stays the person to catch in pursuit of the $US15million ($A20 million) first prize on the season-ending Tour Championship, regardless of the concerted efforts of US Open champion Jon Rahm.
Cantlay added a second-round 66 to his opening 67 for a midway whole of 17 below, the FedEx Cup chief having began the week on 10 below because of the controversial handicap system adopted in 2019.
Rahm started 4 pictures behind Cantlay however diminished his deficit to a single shot because of consecutive rounds of 65 at East Lake, with Bryson DeChambeau an additional 5 strokes again.
A beforehand low-key occasion lastly sparked into life on the again 9 on Friday as Rahm obtained to inside a shot of the lead with a birdie on the twelfth, just for Cantlay to then spin his strategy to the following to inside millimetres of the opening as Rahm got here up wanting the inexperienced.
Cantlay tapped in to seemingly restore his two-shot benefit, however Rahm had different concepts and holed from 35 ft for an identical birdie.
Rahm did properly to drop only one shot following a wild tee shot on the 14th and birdies on the sixteenth and seventeenth took him briefly right into a tie for the lead, just for Cantlay to comply with him in from 15 ft on the seventeenth.
It was an analogous story on the final as an excellent bunker shot left Rahm with a tap-in birdie earlier than Cantlay obtained up and down from the sting of the inexperienced to take a one-shot lead into the weekend.
With the large prizemoney on supply, Cantlay mentioned he was doing his greatest to make it really feel like every other week on tour.
“All the pieces that I am telling myself is simply to remain completely current and shoot the bottom rating I can every single day and never get forward of myself,” Cantlay mentioned.
“Sunday will really feel like a standard Sunday, I am positive, however till then, I feel it is actually vital to remain current and I’ve achieved job of that up to now.”
Rahm got here up simply shy of holing out from a greenside bunker for eagle at No.18, which might have landed him in a tie with Cantlay.
“If I might every week select when I’ll play my greatest golf, I might all the time select the again 9, particularly the previous few holes, however clearly you may’t select that,” Rahm mentioned.
“I feel it simply occurred to be once I hit some actually good pictures and make the birdies.”
Justin Thomas is alone at 10 below, one shot in entrance of Australia’s Cameron Smith, Tony Finau, Kevin Na, Viktor Hovland and Harry English.
Smith had two bogeys on the entrance 9 however then made 4 birdies on the again 9 to stay tied fifth.
Rory McIlroy is 9 pictures off the lead on eight below par after recovering from taking part in his first 4 holes in two over par to return a 66, the two-time FedEx Cup winner ending in type with three straight birdies.
Three-time main winner Jordan Spieth is alongside McIlroy and South African Louis Oosthuizen.
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