The Open: Dustin Johnson and Justin Thomas among big names to miss cut
By Keith Jackson at Carnoustie
Last Updated: 21/07/18 9:03am
Dustin Johnson and Justin Thomas endured an Open to forget as the world's top two players missed the halfway cut at Carnoustie.
The star American pair crashed out along with world No 5 Jon Rahm, and they were almost joined by world No 3 Justin Rose until the gallant Englishman holed a tricky 10-foot putt for his first birdie of the day at the 18th to squeeze into the weekend with nothing to spare.
Johnson was left to rue five dropped shots just on the 18th over the two days, completing his first-round 76 with a triple-bogey seven following a trip to the Barry Burn before shaving just one shot off that score on day two.
The former US Open champion gave himself a great chance to extend his tournament when he made three birdies in four holes to get to three over, but he bogeyed 17 and then ran up a six at the last to miss the cut by three strokes.
Thomas was looking a likely contender for the title after his opening 69, but he damaged his hopes with a horror run of three consecutive double bogeys from the sixth as he tumbled from two under to four over.
He got back on track with birdies at 13 and 14, but further mistakes at the 16th and 17th added up to a disappointing 77 which was one too many to play the final 36 holes.
Sergio Garcia, the runner-up to Padraig Harrington the last time The Open was held at Carnoustie in 2007, was another big name to falter late on day two after the Spaniard had done well to repair the damage of his opening 75.
Birdies at 11, 13 and 14 lifted Garcia to two over, but he gave both shots back on the 16th and could not find the birdie he needed over the closing two holes as he closed on four over.
His compatriot Rahm was another surprise casualty having fired a 69 in round one, and his card was similar to that of Thomas as he undid a bright start with a poor finish to the front nine.
Rahm pulled his drive out of bounds at the seventh and ran up a triple bogey seven, and he dropped another shot at the next before more mistakes at the ninth cost him a double-bogey six.
The fiery 23-year-old struggled to keep his temper under control as he bogeyed 12 and carded a further double bogey at 16, and a birdie at the last was scant consolation as he bowed out on five over par.
In-form Bubba Watson, a three-time winner on the PGA Tour this year, also suffered an early exit when he could only add a 73 to his opening 75, while Harrington joined the exodus as the two-time champion finished on eight over.
And the high-profile list of weekend absentees will include Ian Poulter, who had one triple-bogey and two doubles in a 10-over 81 which saw him slump outside the top 140 on 12 over par.