Ex-champion Murray out of Wimbledon after back surgery

Hatton leads by 3, DeChambeau stalks Rahm’s Legion XIII for team lead at LIV Golf Nashville

COLLEGE GROVE, Tenn.: After a frustrating early streak, nine straight pars, Tyrrell Hatton found another gear in Saturday’s second round at LIV Golf Nashville.

As a result, the Légion XIII star is 18 holes away from his first individual title since joining LIV Golf. But first he must hold off his closest pursuers, including a back-up player looking for a storybook score and some two Hatton birdied six of the last seven holes at The Grove as he shot to 7-under 64.

With a two-day total of 13 points, he is three strokes ahead of Crushers GC’s John Catlin, who replaced the injured Charles Howell III. Their captains – the Crushers’ Bryson DeChambeau and Legion XIII’s Jon Rahm, two of LIV Golf’s biggest stars – are back with another stroke, tied for third in 9 years.

With Legion XIII leading the team race by five strokes over the Crushers, there is plenty of hardware to go to the top four players. “I’ll probably be a bit nervous tomorrow but I’d say that’s a good thing,” said Hatton, whose last pro title was in 2021. “It’s obvious that if you’re upset about something, he genuinely cares. “

The individual leaderboards were crowded in the first half of Saturday — at one point more than 30 players were within four shots of the lead. But then Hatton went on a birdie binge that included a chip-in at the par-3 13th, followed by a 30-foot putt on the 14th.

“Around this course, if you hit the ball well, you’re going to have a lot of opportunities for birdie,” said Hatton, who joined LIV Golf in the offseason to play on Rahm’s expanding team. “Don’t want to make too many pars.” It was kind of okay in the end, but I think tomorrow I don’t want to string 10 pars in a row, obviously when they’re chasing me.”

Catlin shot his second straight 66, playing the final nine holes in a bogey-free 4-under. After a string of tours around the world and 13 professional wins, Catlin welcomes the chance to write her own Cinderella story this week. No reserve player has ever finished in the top five in a LIV Golf tournament.

“I’ve been here before and I can honestly say I’ve won before and I can do it again,” he said. “I’m going to go out there and control what I can control and see what happens.”

DeChambeau struggled tiredly after a whirlwind US Open win at Pinehurst last Sunday. He bogeyed two of the first three holes on Saturday but avoided further trouble, finishing with four birdies over the final seven holes while feeding off the energy of the sold-out crowd.

“I’m proud of the way I’ve managed my energy, even though I’m close to zero right now,” DeChambeau said. “… I just want one shot on the back nine and that back nine is available. I hope I can get the job done tomorrow.”

This week, Rahm was unsure how competitive he would be after pulling out of the second round at LIV Golf Houston with a foot infection that forced him to miss the US Open.

After an opening 70, he produced the lowest score of the second round, an 8-under 63 that included nine birdies. This is the lowest round compared to LIV Golf par.

“I needed a lap like that to get close to the lead,” Rahm said. “Obviously Tyrrell did fantastic. There’s still some work tomorrow.” Hatton, Catlin and DeChambeau will play in the lead after the first tee, while Rahm will play Ripper GC captain Cameron Smith and Torque GC’s Carlos Ortiz – the winner two weeks ago at LIV. Golf Houston – in the earlier group that starts the first tee at 12:05 PM CDT. Smith and Ortiz are tied for fifth at 8-under.

Team counter scores

Standings and tally for Saturday’s second round of the LIV Golf Nashville team competition:

1. LEGION XIII -28 (Rahm 63, Hatton 64, Vincent 66; 2nd point: -20)

2. CRUSHERS GC -23 (Catlin 66, DeChambeau 66, Lahiri 68; 2nd point: -13)

3. MAJESTICKS GC -19 (Westwood 66, Poulter 67, Horsfield 68; 2nd point: -12)

4. TORQUE GC -18 (Ortiz 66, Niemann 69, Pereira 69; 2nd point: -9)

5. IRON HEADS GC -15 (Kozuma 67, Na 67, Vincent 67; 2nd point: -12)

6. CLEEKS GC -14 (Meronk 66, Bland 67, Kaymer 70; 2nd point: -10)

T7. SMASH GC -13 (Kokrak 65, McDowell 68, Gooch 69; 2nd point: -11)

T7. STINGER GC -13 (Burmester 66, Grace 68, Oosthuizen 70; 2nd point: -9)

T7. FIREBALLS GC -13 (Chacarra 70, Garcia 71, Puig 73; 2nd point: +1)

10. RIPPER GC -11 (Smith 65, Leishman 69, Jones 72; 2nd point: -7)

11. 4ACES GC -8 (Varner III 64, Perez 69, Reed 70; 2nd point: -10)

T12. RANGEGOATS GC -6 (Wolff 67, Pieters 68, Watson 71; 2nd point: -7)

T12. HYFLYERS GC -6 (Steele 67, Mickelson 70, Tringale 70; 2nd point: -6)

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