PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. — The cliche is true about TPC Sawgrass: It’s a democratic golf course, and it favors no particular player. That’s become evident with a leaderboard after two rounds headed by 2010 British Open winner Louis Oosthuizen and one-time PGA Tour winner Kyle Stanley.
Both players share The Players Championship lead at 9-under 135, with J.B. Holmes in third place at 7 under par.
Oosthuizen is hoping to rely on his British Open win — his only PGA Tour victory — as he vies for his first U.S. title.
“It’s going to be a tough week,” he said. “I just think it’s a week where, like a major week, it’s all on how you mentally go about it and just stay in the moment and try your best every shot.”
Lingering in fourth place is Vijay Singh, who has won three majors in his career but came into this week having missed nine of his last 10 PGA Tour cuts. The 54-year-old Fijian, who calls this town home, was struggling coming into this week but has found himself into a late Saturday tee time.
Then, on the other end of things, the Stadium Course chewed up and spit out several top-name players who weren’t on their games.
Jordan Spieth missed The Players cut for the third year in a row, finding the water on the par-3 17th for the first time in his career as part of a disappointing round. Spieth played the first 58 holes of his career at this championship without a bogey. His record has been the exact opposite of neat and tidy since.
“It’s just been on and around these greens. I just haven’t quite figured it out,” Spieth said. “These greens get pretty crusty and, historically, whenever firm Bermuda greens are crusty to where it’s tough to set the putter down, I just struggle with my alignment and it just throws me off. It happened again here.”
Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy will at least each see the weekend. They both played to even-par 144 without their best stuff — and in McIlroy’s case, his best health after tweaking a back injury suffered in January — while playing with each (and Justin Thomas, who is also at even par) over the last two days.