US PGA Championship: Rickie Fowler sets early pace, Ian Poulter and Jason Day in contention

Rickie Fowler sets early pace at US PGA Championship

US PGA Championship 2018
Dates: 9-12 August Venue: Bellerive Country Club Coverage: Commentary on 5 live sports extra from 22:00 BST Thursday-Saturday; 5 live 20:30 Sunday; live text updates on BBC Sport website

Rickie Fowler is the early clubhouse leader at the US PGA Championship after starting his latest bid to win a first major with an impressive five-under 65.

Starting his opening round on the 10th, the American holed six birdies to card his joint-lowest round at a major.

England’s Ian Poulter and 2016 champion Jason Day of Australia are among a group on three under at Bellerive.

Defending champion Justin Thomas ended one under, while playing partners Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods finished level.

World number one Dustin Johnson and England pair Justin Rose and Tommy Fleetwood are among the later starters on day one in St Louis.

Fowler, 29, has long been tipped as a major winner but, despite a number of near misses, has not been able to earn a career-defining triumph at the Masters, US Open, The Open Championship or PGA Championship.

The world number nine, who has twice finished in the top five at each of the majors, is the highest-ranked player yet to win one of golf’s biggest prizes.

His opening birdie on the 14th was cancelled out when he found the sand on the par-three 16th, but he rolled in a 12-foot birdie putt on the par-five 17th to turn at one under.

Fowler, who found 11 of 14 fairways and 16 of 18 greens in regulation, added four more birdies on the front nine to match his 65 at this year’s Masters.

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BBC Sport – Golf

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