Rain delays US Open yet again as Woods trails

THE weather-hit US Open is likely to require at least a fifth day's play after heavy overnight rain at an already soaked Bethpage Black delayed the scheduled start yesterday.

THE weather-hit US Open is likely to require at least a fifth day's play after heavy overnight rain at an already soaked Bethpage Black delayed the scheduled start yesterday.

Organisers said play, which had been due to commence yesterday morning, would not be possible until at least 4pm.

With the third round of the year's second major still far from being completed, that will almost certainly mean a today finish at the earliest.

More than six inches of rain has been dumped on Bethpage Black since the start of this month with three-quarters of an inch saturating the hilly par-70 layout overnight.

Although conditions were dry early yesterday morning, the course was unplayable and further showers are expected for the rest of the day and for all of next week on Long Island.

PGA Tour rookie Ricky Barnes held a one-shot lead heading into yesterday after firing a five-under-par 65 on Saturday for a record 36-hole total of 132 at the rain-delayed tournament.

Barnes led fellow American Lucas Glover by one stroke and was among 16 golfers yet to tee off for the third round when action was suspended the previous evening due to flooded greens.

Holder Tiger Woods, who won the 2002 US Open at Bethpage, was a distant 11 shots off the pace after carding a second-round 69 and making a par to launch his third round.

Sixty players made the cut at four over par after the 156-man field finally completed the second round on Saturday afternoon due to a backlog caused by storms that washed out Thursday's opening round after just over three hours.- Reuters

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