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The US Open: Final Round Preview

Original Article Published 17 October 2022

With just five shots separating 16 players at the top of the leaderboard, it could be a thrilling final day at the US Open, where Briton Matt Fitzpatrick holds a share of the lead.

Fitzpatrick. who is 3/10 to finish in the top 5 and 3/1 to win the tournament, is after his first Major and is superbly placed to achieve that dream at Brookline as he sits on -4 overall, alongside another man desperate for his first Major, rising American star Will Zalatoris.

The duo, who tee off at 19:45 on Sunday, were among only seven players who went under par on Saturday after windy conditions turned the Boston course into a beast and Zalatoris is 7/2 to emerge victorious.

What: 122nd US Open, final round

Where: The Country Club, Brookline, Massachusetts

When: First group out at 13:49, Sunday 19th June 2022

How to watch: Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Golf and bet365's Live Golf Tracker

Odds: Matthew Fitzpatrick 3/1, Will Zalatoris 7/2, Jon Rahm 4/1, Scottie Scheffler 6/1, Rory McIlroy 11/1

Plenty in contention

The leading pair sit one shot ahead of defending US Open champion Jon Rahm and two clear of three players on -2 - 2011 USPGA winner Keegan Bradley (16/1), Canadian Adam Hadwin (25/1) and world number one Scottie Scheffler.

There are then another three players on -1 who are currently tied for seventh, American pair Sam Burns and Joel Dahmen and four-time Major winner Rory McIlroy.

With so many players clearly in contention, it's an afternoon and evening not to be missed.

Fitzpatrick seems primed to pick up his first Major sooner rather than later. After going close at the USPGA, when he finished in a tie for fifth, the Englishman will have been relishing going back to Boston for the US Open as The Country Club course was the venue for his 2013 US Amateur Open triumph.

After rounds of 68, 70 and 68 so far, there's been nothing to suggest the 27-year-old isn't now capable of seeing off the rest at a course he is right at home at.

In-form Zalatoris a big danger

However, Zalatoris cannot be discounted either. He nearly won the USPGA, but lost in a play-off to Justin Thomas and is another of the new wave of players that could go on to win multiple Majors.

Getting the first one on the board is often the most difficult, though, but the American has proved in the past he can cope with the Sunday pressure well and he will now surely go close.

Bradley and Hadwin will look to stay in the mix, but, in truth, it's the presence of world number one Scheffler on -2 going into the final day that will probably have the rest worried the most.

Can Scheffler make 2022 even better?

The Masters champion has enjoyed a fantastic 2022 to date, winning in Phoenix before following up by securing the Arnold Palmer Invitational and then the WGC-Dell Match Play.

Those victories were the pre-cursor to a brilliant Masters triumph and it would be no surprise to see him now go on maintain his ultra-consistency and bridge that two-shot gap before moving clear on the final day at Brookline.

McIlroy can recover from Saturday struggles

McIlroy, meanwhile, described his Saturday as "one of the toughest days on a golf course I've had in a long time" after going round in a three-over 73 to slip down the leaderboard.

The gusty conditions were playing havoc with the Northern Irishman and several other players' games, but the fact he recovered sufficiently on the back nine to, as he put it "keep himself in the tournament" means, with much calmer and cooler conditions expected for the final round, McIlroy could conceivably rise to the top again.

Irish ace Power among group on the fringe

Further down the leaderboard sit the likes of Americans Nick Hardy, who is on level par after the first three rounds, one shot ahead of his fellow countrymen Denny McCarthy and Gary Woodland, while Irishman Seamus Power is also in the group of players tied for 11th on one over, five shots off the lead.

It would take a big effort and turnaround for any of those men to now come through and win, while star names Dustin Johnson and Hideki Matsuyama (both +2) and Jordan Spieth (+3) all look to be too far adrift at this stage.

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