Eighth hole bites back as Rory McIlroy trails record pacesetters

Eighth hole bites back as Rory McIlroy trails record pacesetters

Rory McIlroy gave back the shots he made by holing in one on the eighth as he was left trailing the record-breaking halfway leaders at the Travelers Championship.

McIlroy aced the par three in the first round, but could only find the water second time around as he double bogeyed the hole en route to a six-under-par 64.

“I hit a pretty good shot, I just misjudged the wind a little bit and it came up short in the one place you couldn’t miss today,” said McIlroy, who is tied for 10th on eight-under-par – seven behind leaders Keegan Bradley and Denny McCarthy at TPC River Highlands in Connecticut.

“Other than that, it was a really good round of golf.”

McCarthy followed his opening round of 60 with a 65 to set a commanding clubhouse target which only Bradley, who fired a second round 63, could match – their 15-under-par total of 125 setting a tournament record.

“It’s nice, but golf tournaments aren’t 36 holes unfortunately,” said McCarthy. “I know there’s still a lot of golf left and I’m playing some really nice golf, so I’m looking forward to having fun this weekend.”

Chez Reavie, who won the title in 2019, moved within two of the lead with a 63 with Eric Cole a further two strokes back.

Defending champion Xander Schauffele and Viktor Hovland are among those in a large group alongside McIlroy on eight-under, one better than a group containing England’s Aaron Rai, Ireland’s former Open champion Shane Lowry and world number one Scottie Scheffler.

Matt Fitzpatrick was a shot further back while his successor as US Open champion Wyndham Clark shot a 67 to move to five under – Masters champion Jon Rahm and Tommy Fleetwood missing the cut.