Mickelson and Horschel joint leaders

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With several groups needing to come back in the morning, to play a handful of holes of their second round, the two leaders in the clubhouse are Billy Horschel and Phil Mickelson.

Horschel is the surprise entity, with one PGA Tour win to his name, the Zurich New Orleans Classic, which he won in April earlier this year.

Mickelson is, of course, attempting to win his first US Open, after finishing runner-up on no less than five occasions.

“It feels great to have finished my round,” said Mickelson, who will be 43 on Sunday. “I let a lot of brilliant opportunities slide in the middle of my round, which was disappointing; but then right at the end I managed to hole a long putt for a birdie on the 18th. You don’t expect to make birdie there, but I hit a really aggressive putt, and it was a great finish.”

With only two players under par at the end of the second day, the course at Merion once again lived up to its billing. There were those at the beginning of the week who thought, with the course being so soft, low scores would be the order of the week, but despite its lack of length, it is proving to be an incredibly tough test of golf.

And it has produced a terrific leaderboard, because just behind the two leaders, a bunch of players lurk menacingly, which includes The three Englishmen Luke Donald, Justin Rose and Ian Poulter. (Poulter still has four holes of his second round to play tomorrow.)

“Today was all about getting yourself in position,” said Rose, who won the AT&T Championship on a course a couple of miles down the road a few years ago. “I definitely feel like I am capable of winning these sort of tournaments, but I’m not getting too excited yet. Deep down I feel I can.”

Leaderboard:

-1: Billy Horschel, Phil Mickelson

Level: Luke Donald, Steve Stricker, Justin Rose, Ian Poulter (after 14), Cheng-Tsung Pan (a) (after 9)

+1: John Senden, Nicklas Colsaerts, Jerry Kelly, (after 13), Charley Hoffman (after 14), Bio Kim (a) (after 12)

+2: Mathew Goggin, Charl Schwartzel (after 16), Hunter Mahan (after 15)  

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