Tiger Woods conceded he was running out of time to win major titles after falling out of contention at the US PGA Championship on Saturday.

The 44-year-old American shot a two-over 72 for the second successive round to leave him with little to play for leading into the final day at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco.

It will end as another opportunity missed for the reigning Masters champion in his bid to equal Jack Nicklaus' record of 18 major victories.

Woods has managed 15 over a 24-year professional career, but only one since 2008.

"There's not as many [opportunities to win] as when I first started playing," Woods said after completing his round.

"The reality is that the golf courses are getting bigger. They are getting longer. The margin between making the cut and the lead is a lot smaller than it used to be. Used to be sometimes 12 to 15 shots.

"Now we had, what, nine shots here? It's just different. It's getting tighter and it's getting harder to win events, but you look at the leaderboard of most major championships, you see the same guys.

“May not be always the same winners, but you see the same handful of guys are there.

“They understand how to win major championships, how to win the big events, how to plod their way along, how difficult it is to win these big events."

Putting again proved a problem for Woods as he failed to make a birdie until the 16th hole.

Though well behind the contenders, Woods said he had a clear goal in mind for the final round.

"You just keep fighting, no matter what," he said. "Whether the rounds are shooting 61s or shooting 81s, the intensity should always be there, the effort should always be there.

"I keep fighting until the end [with] pride in what I do. I love to compete. Unfortunately I didn't do my job today.

"At the end it clicked and hopefully I can get something going tomorrow and get into the red for the tournament."

Tommy Fleetwood was able to learn plenty during the enforced break from golf and says his game is getting better and better after firing himself into contention at the US PGA Championship.

After a steady but largely sedate level-par opening round, Fleetwood carded a brilliant six-under-par 64 at TPC Harding Park on Friday to sit two shots back of leader Li Haotong.

This weekend is golf's first major of 2020 with the season having been suspended for three months as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Fleetwood, who has runners-up finishes as the 2018 U.S. Open and last year's Open Championship on his resume, appreciates what he missed during the time away from course and feels his game is in decent nick.

"It really is different. I like playing golf, and I played golf over the break, but it's not the same," he said.

"Tournament golf, even on a course that's scoreable – the margins for error are so much smaller than leisurely golf. You play at a different pace and the setups are very different.

"So I've learned a lot from going away and coming back. When you're playing 30 times a year, you don't realise what a groove you're getting in or how sharp you really are – even when you're not playing at your best.

"Like I said, I feel like my game is getting better and better. I'm not gonna say I'm playing the best I've ever played, or I'm feeling as sharp as I've ever felt, but it's definitely coming back, and days like today – a major championship and I've shot a great score – shows I'm hopefully not too far off."

The Englishman feels his ability to find fairways was the difference between his first and second round scores.

"I had that bad couple of holes on 12 and 13, which, you know, on a tough day you don't want to give too much away, and that kind of halted progress," Fleetwood added.

"Level par wasn't a bad score. I was disappointed when I came in because I felt like I had a round going at a certain time, but it was fine.

"And today [Friday], just the same – I feel like my game is improving day by day really since I've come back to playing a little bit.

"I think I hit a lot of good golf shots. In the wind, it puts such an emphasis on ball control and I think sometimes what looks like an average golf shot is a very, very good golf shot. And you have to remind yourself of that.

"I hit a lot of fairways and that clearly makes it easier from there around this golf course."

Brooks Koepka played down any concerns over a hip issue after the second round of the US PGA Championship.

Bidding to win a third straight US PGA title, Koepka carded a two-under 68 at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco on Friday to be two shots adrift of leader Li Haotong.

But the American required treatment on his hip three times during his round, raising concerns over his health heading into the weekend.

Koepka, however, played down any worries, saying: "It was my hip. Nothing to do with my knee. It's fine.

"I woke up this morning, it was tight, and worked out and it got even tighter and then we loosened it up. It was a little tight when I was hitting balls on the range but it's nothing to be worried about.

"We'll loosen it up again and it will be a lot better."

Koepka finished his round with a birdie at the final hole and sits in a six-way tie for second at six under.

The four-time major champion was happy with his form, saying missed putts cost him an even better second-round score.

"It was nice to finish that round with a birdie. It got I thought pretty difficult from about 11 on. The wind picks up, and it's quite difficult," Koepka said.

"It's not an easy golf course. You've got to find the fairway and then find the uphill putt or hit it close to the pin. These greens are so good.

"You can make a lot of putts. I hit a lot of good putts today, just didn't go in."

Li Haotong will take a surprise two-stroke lead into the weekend at the US PGA Championship after an impressive second round.

The 25-year-old is bidding to become the first Chinese man to win a major and is well-placed at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco.

Li backed up his opening-round 67 with a five-under 65, moving to eight under and into a two-shot lead.

He produced a bogey-free round that featured five birdies to sit clear of Brooks Koepka (68), Jason Day (69), Tommy Fleetwood (64), Daniel Berger (67), Justin Rose (68) and Mike Lorenzo-Vera (68).

Koepka's bid for a third straight US PGA title remains well and truly alive despite the American needing treatment on his hip during his second round.

The four-time major champion birdied his final hole to be in the six-way tie for second on what remains a congested leaderboard.

Day, who shared the overnight lead with Brendon Todd (70), was among those challenged in the tougher conditions later in the day.

But none of that group could catch Li, who spent hours practising after his round was over.

Todd, Paul Casey (67) and Cameron Champ (64) are tied for eighth at five under, while several big names have endured a mixed start to the tournament.

Dustin Johnson continued his consistent start with a 67 to be at four under, alongside the likes of Xander Schauffele (70).

The likes of Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas, though, were at risk of missing the cut.

While Woods (72) never got going, McIlroy (69) got on a roll that included four straight birdies before undoing his good work at the 12th, where he made a triple bogey after finding the rough.

Woods and McIlroy are even and one under respectively, while Spieth (68) and Thomas (70) made the cut by a stroke, sitting at one over.

Rickie Fowler, meanwhile, saw his run of 14 consecutive majors without missing the cut end after following up his 73 with a 69.

While Sergio Garcia also missed the cut, 2010 champion Martin Kaymer failed to reach the weekend, shooting a 12-over 82 a day after his opening 66.

Meanwhile, Cameron Tringale was disqualified from the event for the second time after signing an incorrect scorecard.

Jason Day was pleased with his second round as he stayed in contention at the US PGA Championship on Friday.

The Australian carded a one-under 69 at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco to be two shots behind leader Li Haotong.

Day, the 2015 champion, was happy with his performance in tougher conditions.

"The course played a little bit, obviously, a lot harder today for us in the afternoon. I know that the guys got a lot stronger wind yesterday," he said.

"So to be able to walk off beating the golf course and shooting 69 today, I was pretty pleased with that."

Day will head into the weekend in contention for a second major win and first victory since 2018.

The 32-year-old said he had tried to take a different approach after a difficult year, which has included four missed cuts in 11 events.

"I've been in such a terrible head space for the last six months that I'm trying to have a better outlook, a better attitude about it," Day said.

"When you wake up in the morning, you have a better attitude and you're excited to go to the golf course.

"It makes things like a day like today where it's difficult seem a lot better than coming out, if you had a terrible attitude or you're not feeling that great. You could potentially come out here and shoot yourself out of the lead or out of contention.

"I'm excited for the next two days. It's going to be a lot of fun. It's going to be tough. It should be a good weekend."

Li Haotong insisted he had "no expectation" at the US PGA Championship despite taking the lead during the second round.

The 25-year-old from China carded a five-under 65 at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco on Friday to lead the year's first major.

Li, who finished third at the 2017 Open Championship, has struggled this year, missing four cuts in eight events.

He is looking to become the first Chinese man to win a major, but said he was simply trying to have fun.

"Well, I've got no expectation actually, because you know, last few months, stay at home doing nothing," Li said.

"I just want to [come] out here, have fun."

After the PGA Tour season restarted in June, Li missed the cut at the Memorial Tournament before finishing tied for 75th at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational.

Li said he came into the US PGA Championship struggling for confidence after his recent performances.

"I didn't even think I could play like this this week, especially, like you said, got no confidence," he said.

"Probably it helped me clear my mind a little bit this week."

A faultless second round saw Li Haotong move into the lead at the US PGA Championship with a two-shot advantage over Tommy Fleetwood.

Englishman Fleetwood finished the day at six under par with a 64 to follow Thursday's 70, to put himself in a strong position ahead of the weekend.

Cameron Champ and Paul Casey were each a further stroke behind.

It was Li who was the man to catch, though, as he produced a blemish-free round of 65, with four birdies leaving him out in front ahead of the late starters.

Brendon Todd, who had claimed a share of the overnight lead with Jason Day, fell three shots off the pace after going round in level par.

Harold Varner III and compatriot Brandt Snedeker each carded 66 on Friday to move within the projected cut of one over, level with Bryson DeChambeau at two under par.

Jon Rahm entered the clubhouse tied for 36th at one under, while Phil Mickelson looks to have made the cut after a second-round 69.

Brendon Todd said his putting was "lights out" as he took a share of the lead at the US PGA Championship on Thursday.

The American carded a five-under 65 at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco to share the lead with Jason Day after the opening round.

Todd, who finished tied for 15th at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational last week, said he putted at his best during the first round.

"It was lights out. I couldn't have putted any better, there's no doubt, and I did this last week," he said.

"The first round, I had a lights-out day putting, and, again, I've always watched guys shoot those low opening rounds and it's really just the guys who are confident.

"Week in, week out, their games are rolling. It's nice to be able to do that."

Todd made a nine-foot putt for par at the final hole to ensure he led overnight with Day.

The 35-year-old said it was a key moment to ensure he went into the second round with some momentum.

"I think it really helps me going into [Friday]. It allows me to spend the next 12 hours before my second round feeling really good, like I've got momentum still," Todd said.

"I would say it's really just, for this moment, it means a lot but after that, it's just going to be another score at the end of the week."

Jason Day and Brendon Todd share a one-stroke lead on a congested leaderboard after the first round of the US PGA Championship on Thursday.

Day, the 2015 champion, carded a bogey-free five-under 65 at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco.

The Australian capitalised on favourable early conditions and made five birdies to sit a stroke clear of nine players, alongside Todd.

Todd produced the best round of those in action later in the day, although he mixed seven birdies with two bogeys.

Bidding to win a third straight US PGA title, Brooks Koepka is among that group after shooting a four-under 66.

Koepka mixed six birdies with two bogeys as the American continued to grow in confidence after a runner-up finish at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational.

Martin Kaymer, the 2010 champion, Scottie Scheffler, Xander Schauffele, Bud Cauley, Zach Johnson, Justin Rose, Brendan Steele and Mike Lorenzo-Vera are also in a tie for third.

Rose was just one under with six holes to play in his round, but the Englishman managed three birdies to be in contention.

In action for just the second time since the PGA Tour season restarted in June, 15-time major champion Tiger Woods opened with a two-under 68.

The American was even through his first 12 holes before a strong finish saw him birdie three of four holes prior to dropping another shot.

Bryson DeChambeau accidentally broke his driver during his first round and was twice four under, but finished with a 68.

Dustin Johnson carded a one-under 69 to be tied for 33rd, a shot better off than four-time major champion Rory McIlroy, who battled to his 70.

Jon Rahm also struggled to get going on his way to a 70, while 2017 champion Justin Thomas fired a 71.

Jordan Spieth's hopes of completing a career Grand Slam this year took a hit, the American again battling as he opened with a 73 that included five bogeys. Rickie Fowler also shot an opening-round 73.

Brooks Koepka said he is feeling confident in his bid for a US PGA Championship three-peat after shooting a first-round 66 in San Francisco.

Koepka impressed in the opening round of the year's first major due to coronavirus, the two-time defending champion holing six birdies and two bogeys to be just a shot off the pace at TPC Harding Park.

Asked what it would mean to win three straight US PGA titles, American star Koepka replied: "It would mean extra because I wasn't able to do it at the U.S. Open.

"I think that drove me nuts a little bit. I mean, obviously I played about as good – I played good golf, but I just got beat by Gary [Woodland].

"To do it here, it would be special. I think – I don't know how many – I think there's, what, six guys that have ever won three in a row. Not a bad list to be on. That's the whole goal every time we tee it up in a major is to win them. The whole year is spent prepping for these four."

Koepka started on the back nine and after bogeying his second hole, the four-time major champion responded by birdieing four of his next seven.

The big-hitting 30-year-old dropped the first following the turn, however, a pair of birdies on the second and fourth holes ensured he ended the day at four under.

"I mean, it's only 18 holes right now. I feel good. I feel confident," Koepka told reporters afterwards.

"I'm excited for the next three days. I think I can definitely play a lot better, and just need to tidy a few things up, and we'll be there come Sunday on the back nine."

Koepka entered the US PGA having fallen short in his title defence at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational, though it marked his best result of the year and just his second top-10 finish in 11 events.

"I feel right where I should be," he said. "If you would have said last week and this week, I'd feel perfect, right where I need to be. I'm excited. I'm ready to play. But you asked for three weeks, so it's been okay. There was a missed cut in there."

Koepka added: "The majors almost seem like an easier week for me, nine holes pretty much every day in the practice rounds and try to stay off my feet and not do too much.

"I think sometimes guys cannot overprepare, but just practice a little too much. If you're going to be here until Sunday it's pretty mentally draining. Physically it's fine, but mentally I'm done after four days of this."

Bryson DeChambeau accidentally snapped the head off his driver during the opening round of the US PGA Championship.

American golfer DeChambeau broke his driver after hitting a tee shot on the seventh hole at TPC Harding Park on Thursday.

One of the biggest hitters on the PGA Tour, DeChambeau was leaning on the club as he attempted to pick up the tee when the head became detached in San Francisco.

DeChambeau – a six-time Tour champion – was able to replace the driver as it was not damaged through anger or abuse.

"The head is fine, it's just the shaft. That was weird, swinging too hard. I guess it's all those swings I put in. Glad I can replace it, that's awesome. That’s a nice break," DeChambeau said on course.

"I think it is so funny. It was bound to break. I've been using it for a long time. Got a lot of good use out of it."

Rory McIlroy felt an even-par 70 in the US PGA Championship first round was not too bad after battling in San Francisco.

The four-time major champion struggled to a 70 that included four birdies and four bogeys at TPC Harding Park on Thursday.

McIlroy said it was a missed opportunity in the first round, but also believed his score could have been worse.

"Condition-wise, the wind wasn't up and it was a little warmer, so that was nice," the Northern Irishman said.

"I felt like the course was there for the taking. Jason Day shot five under. There's been a few four unders.

"The pins were tucked a little bit. The greens are getting a touch firmer. A lot of wind directions. For example, there's a few holes where the wind was – or the pin was on the right side of the green and the wind blowing right to left, so it's hard to get yourself to get close to those. You're sort of hitting to the middle of the greens a lot.

"It was there for the taking today. I mean, I feel like I definitely could have been a few shots lower, but you know, I sort of grinded it out and with how I hit it on the back nine, even par actually wasn't too bad."

After a birdie at his opening hole – the 10th – McIlroy made three consecutive bogeys starting at 12 before recovering.

McIlroy said he needed improvement in the second round, having struggled off the tee during his opening 18 holes.

"Actually got off a nice start, birdieing the first hole of the day, the 10th hole for us, and then, yeah, I made three bogeys in a row. Ended up being a pretty good bogey on 14," he said.

"And then after that, was happy, I birdied three holes in a four-hole stretch to get back to under par for the day which was nice. That was good.

"Then on our second nine, the front nine, I didn't hit fairways, and then from there, the way that the pins were tucked, I was just trying to play to the front of the greens and two-putt from 40 feet and move on to the next hole.

"Need to hit a few more fairways tomorrow to try to attack some pins and get it closer, and not leave myself four- and five-footers for par all day."

Jason Day feels he is building momentum after grabbing the lead at the US PGA Championship on Thursday.

The Australian carded a five-under 65 at TPC Harding Park to hold a one-stroke lead on what was a congested leaderboard during the first round.

Despite being winless since 2018, Day has four top-10 finishes this year, including three in a row leading into the first major of 2020.

Day, the 2015 US PGA champion, said he felt his form building heading to San Francisco.

"There was definitely a lot of momentum coming in off the previous finishes that I've had, three top-10s, which has been nice," he said.

"The game feels like it's coming around. I'm pleased with it.

"I shouldn't say I'm not excited. I am excited to come out and play every day, but I know that I can improve, and mainly my putting can improve a little bit more.

"I feel like I've been working very hard in the off weeks and especially when I come to a tournament to be able to get my putting back to where it is because it's always been a strength of mine, and I feel like the game is slowly coming around, the confidence is coming around because I'm starting to see the results, which has been good."

The colder weather in San Francisco was talked about heading into the major and Day has dealt with back injuries in the past.

The 32-year-old admitted he was more cautious in the cooler weather to protect his back.

"It's still pretty cool. It was nice to be able to have the sun for a change. It's been kind of overcast and grey here," Day said.

"But it has been cool – you've got to be careful. It is a lot colder; 50 degrees pretty much to be precise from last week. It was nice to play in the hot weather last week and then this week you're always cautious of doing certain things, bending over.

"But I pretty much lather up in Deep Heat and I try and burn the skin off my back, to be honest. And I feel pretty good, so I've been fine."

Tiger Woods made a steady start to his quest for a fifth US PGA Championship but an eye-catching 66 from Brooks Koepka suggested history could be made this weekend in San Francisco.

A two-under 68 from Woods meant the 44-year-old was three shots off the early clubhouse pace set by Jason Day at TPC Harding Park, in golf's first major of the disrupted 2020 season.

Koepka was only one behind Day, however, raising the prospect of a title challenge from the man who is chasing a hat-trick of consecutive US PGA titles.

Woods has twice triumphed at the US PGA in consecutive years (1999-2000, 2006-2007), but nobody has taken the title three years in succession in the stroke-play era.

That is the challenge Koepka is embracing, with the 30-year-old recovering well after dropping a shot at his second hole, having started on the back nine.

Koepka said on Sky Sports: "I just keep playing one shot at a time, one hole at a time, keep plugging away. I'm playing so good that... I hit a good putt at 11 and it just didn't go in, I just over-read it a little bit, but other than that I played everything pretty much how I wanted to. I played really well."

Koepka had been struggling for form since the PGA Tour returned until tying for second last time out at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational.

He had a closing 80 at the Memorial Tournament and missed the cut at the Workday Charity Open and 3M Open, but Koepka loves to produce on the big stage.

"It's a major, I'll get up for it," Koepka said. "It's a little bit of confidence I guess, maybe a little bit, but at the end of the day I just feel good, I'm playing good, and there's no reason to be scientific with all the numbers and stuff. You just go out and play."

Koepka, playing two groups ahead of Woods, parred his way home after making birdie at two and four – his 11th and 13th holes.

By contrast, there was anguish across Woods' face as he missed a par putt at the eighth – his 17th hole – after a brilliant bunker shot, knocking him back from three under.

Woods, nonetheless, was happy with his efforts, and felt scoring would become tougher later in the day due to increasing winds.

The tournament was being played without spectators, meaning there was no crowd energy for the players to feed off, nor any familiar applause as they were introduced for the start of their rounds.

Asked if he was satisfied with how he played, Woods said: "Yeah, I was. I figured we were going to get the more favourable of the conditions today, with the wind supposed to pick up, which it is now.

"The golf course is only going to get more difficult.

"Some of these pins were a little on the difficult side, but overall this golf course is all about hitting fairways, and if you're able to hit the fairway you can get after some of these flags."

Woods was playing with a new putter for the first time, and said: "I've been messing about with it for the better part of over a year.

"It's a little bit longer than my original one, which makes it a little easier on my back. I was able to spend more time practising."

Koepka had plenty of company at four under, with Americans Scottie Scheffler, Xander Schauffele, Zach Johnson, Bud Cauley and Brendan Steele all on the same mark through 18 holes, along with Englishman Justin Rose and Germany's 2010 US PGA winner Martin Kaymer. France's Mike Lorenzo-Vera also had a 66.

Australian Day, the 2015 champion, could not be matched though, with five birdies and no dropped shots setting the standard.

Rory McIlroy, the 2012 and 2014 US PGA winner, was grouped with Woods and world number one Justin Thomas, who won this tournament three years ago. McIlroy had a level-par 70 and Thomas a frustrating one-over 71.

Tiger Woods made a flying start but two-time defending champion Brooks Koepka dropped an early shot as the US PGA Championship got under way on Thursday.

Golf's first major championship of the disrupted 2020 season was in its early stages at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco, and Woods, Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas were in a star-studded group among the early starters.

The Woods-McIlroy-Thomas group got going at 08:33 local time (16:33 BST), beginning on the back nine, and all three made birdies at their opening hole, the par-five 10th.

Koepka went out at 08:11 local time, also starting at the 10th, and was joined by a pair of reigning major champions in US Open winner Gary Woodland and Open Championship victor Shane Lowry.

Winner of this tournament in 2018 and 2019, Koepka found rough to the right of the green at the par-three 11th, going on to miss from inside seven feet for par.

His par attempt lipped out, leaving a short bogey putt.

Jordan Spieth, Justin Rose and Dustin Johnson formed another eye-catching group, with the former dropping an early shot while his playing partners both moved to one under par after two holes.

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