Pieters moves into U.S. Open lead, bright start for Johnson

Former champions Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy will be among the marquee names going out in the afternoon wave at the U.S. Open.

Thomas Pieters plays a shot from the eighth tee during the first round of the U.S. Open Golf Championship.   -  AP

Belgium's Thomas Pieters was making a morning charge at the U.S. Open on Friday, moving to the top of the second round leaderboard on a cold breezy day at Winged Foot Golf Club.

After ideal scoring conditions on Thursday, Winged Foot looked ready to show its teeth with only a handful of early starters playing under par.

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Pieters, who missed the cut at two previous U.S. Opens, started his round with a birdie at the first, picked up another at the fifth and narrowly missed a third at nine to make the turn at six-under, one clear of overnight leader Justin Thomas.

World number one Dustin Johnson, after an opening-round three-over 73 and playing the back nine first, was also looking to make his move as he got an overcast day off to a bright start with a birdie at the 10th and a second at 15.

Former champions Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy will be among the marquee names going out in the afternoon wave.

Woods, like Johnson, will have work to do after an opening-round 73, while Northern Irishman McIlroy will look to build on his first round 67.