Johnson, Rahm share lead as McIlroy charges into contention

Oleh Dejan Kalinic 5 September 2020 13
Johnson, Rahm share lead as McIlroy charges into contention

Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm share the lead after the Tour Championship first round as Rory McIlroy made a strong start.

Johnson, the FedEx Cup leader ahead of the season-ending event, carded a three-under 67 in the opening round at East Lake on Friday.

The American started the tournament atop the leaderboard at 10 under, but his lead is already gone in Atlanta.

Johnson is joined at 13 under by Rahm, who opened with a 65 just days after his incredible win at the BMW Championship.

Rahm beat Johnson in a thrilling play-off at Olympia Fields Country Club and the stars are placed to battle for the $15million prize.

Johnson was even through 11 holes before making birdies at 12, 13 and 15, while Rahm also found form on the back nine with four birdies in five holes beginning at 12.

Justin Thomas, third when the event started, is still in that place after a four-under 66, sitting two strokes back.

But defending FedEx Cup champion McIlroy produced the equal best round of the day to charge into contention.

The Northern Irishman fired a six-under 64 that included three straight birdies to finish as he moved into nine under.

McIlroy came from fifth in the overall standings to win the Tour Championship and FedEx Cup last year.

The other player to shoot a 64 was Abraham Ancer, who climbed into seven under and outright fifth.

Runner-up to McIlroy last year, Xander Schauffele (67) is tied for sixth at six under, alongside Brendon Todd (67), Im Sung-jae (68) and Webb Simpson (70).

Marc Leishman (66), Tyrrell Hatton (67), Lanto Griffin (67) and Daniel Berger (69) are a shot further back.

US PGA Championship winner Collin Morikawa fell back to a tie for 14th after a 71, while Bryson DeChambeau is tied for 18th after his 72.

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Dejan Kalinic

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