There was no medals for a number of high-profile stars who were out early on the opening day of the 2012 U.S. Open at the Olympic Club in San Francisco.
Tiger Woods put himself into contention for that illusive 15th Major in carding a one under par 69 to be in second place and easily out shone playing partners, Phil Mickelson and Bubba Watson.
Compared to Woods, Mickelson and Watson never got out of first gear.
Mickelson has seven bogeys including losing a ball in a tree at the ninth, and just one birdie in his round of a six-over par 76 for his equal worst start in 23 straight U.S. Open appearances.
Not since an opening day 76 in the 1996 U.S. Open at Oakland Hills in Michigan has Mickelson played so poorly in his national Open championship.
But Mickelson had plenty of company with Watson, the reigning Masters champion posting a 79 for his worst ever score in 16 rounds of the U.S. Open. A check of Watson’s first round scorecard shows just one birdie at the par five, 17th but also eight bogeys along with an 18th hole double bogey.
Watson’s previous poorest score in a U.S. Open was a second round 77 to miss the halfway cut in the 2008 championship at Torrey Pines.
Denmark’s Thomas Bjorn is competing in his first U.S Open in five years but it will be a championship the future Ryder Cup captain must already be looking to forget after carding a first round eight over par 78.
Bjorn’s score continues a dismal run in the season’s second Major with Bjorn breaking 70 just once in 37 rounds of the U.S. Open and that was in carding a 69 on day two of the 2001 U.S. Open in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The Dane’s Olympic first round was all bogeys including back-to-back dropped shots at the par five 16th and 17th holes.
Unsung American Michael Thompson is a surprise first round leader in carding a four under par 68 in sunny but cool conditions in the Golden Gate City.