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Jun 30, 2024 6:14 pm

U.S. Senior Open headed for Monday finish; Hiroyuki Fujita on top

hiroyuki fujita

Hiroyuki Fujita of Japan is eight holes away from winning his first senior major championship, but whether he secures the U.S. Senior Open title won’t be decided Sunday.

Play was suspended Sunday afternoon due to a thunderstorm that arrived just after the leader made the turn at Newport (R.I.) Country Club. According to the USGA, course conditions would not allow for play to resume till Monday.

The USGA planned for early tee times on Sunday morning with storms in the forecast, but heavy fog pushed back the start of the day by two hours.

Fujita, who led by two strokes after 54 holes, played his first 10 holes in 2 under par (three birdies, one bogey) to get to 16 under for the championship. He leads Englishman Richard Bland by three shots.

Richard Green of Australia is in third at 12 under, and seven-time senior major winner Steve Stricker is fourth at 10 under. The top four on the leaderboard were all through 10 holes before play was halted.

Fujita, 55, has not won a tournament in the United States but built a strong career in his homeland, with 18 titles on the Japan Golf Tour. He is also the reigning winner of the Japan Senior Open. He could become the first Japanese man to win a USGA championship.

“Any time I come to one of these majors, I’m just excited to be around these guys. Playing with them is an honor,” Fujita said Saturday.

His nearest competition is Bland, the LIV Golf member whose victory in last month’s Senior PGA Championship qualified him for this week.

Bland, who had a 64 Friday, was unhappy with the 69 he shot Saturday. He started his Sunday round with three birdies in a row and posted a 4-under 31 through 10 holes.

–Field Level Media

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