Marc Leishman plays his second shot on the ninth hole during the first round of the US Open at Pebble Beach Golf Links, California. Picture: Harry How/Getty Images
Marc Leishman plays his second shot on the ninth hole during the first round of the US Open at Pebble Beach Golf Links, California. Picture: Harry How/Getty Images

Leishman's 69 puts him four off the pace at US Open

AUSTRALIA'S Marc Leishman has launched himself into contention and compatriots Jason Day and Adam Scott are close behind after the first round of the US Open at Pebble Beach.

Leishman carded a two-under-par 69 to sit just four strokes behind leader Justin Rose at the iconic seaside California course.

Rose, the 2013 US Open winner, made the turn at three under before a trio of late birdies delivered him a 65 - the lowest first round at a US Open at Pebble Beach since Tiger Woods opened his 2000 victory with the same score.

One shot behind the Englishman are Rickie Fowler, Xander Schauffele, Aaron Wise and Louis Oosthuizen.

Leishman started on the 10th hole with four-time major winner Rory McIlroy and Spain's Jon Rahm, but got off to a shocking start.

The world No.21 bogeyed two of his first three holes but bounced back with two birdies to make the turn at even par.

He then rattled off another three birdies, but a bogey at the par-four ninth (his 18th) relegated him to two under.

Leishman is the leading Australian, with Day and Scott posting a one-under 70 and Cameron Smith carding an even-par 71.

Behind Smith are countrymen Aaron Baddeley (72), Marcus Fraser (73), Matt Jones (74) and Brett Drewitt (six over through 17 holes).

- AAP

News Corp Australia

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