Workday Charity Open 2020: Collin Morikawa Leads After Rain-Soaked 2nd Round

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorJuly 11, 2020

DUBLIN, OHIO - JULY 10: Collin Morikawa of the United States reacts on the ninth green during the second round of the Workday Charity Open on July 10, 2020 at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

Collin Morikawa opened his professional career with 22 straight made cuts, second to only Tiger Woods and his 25 to begin his pro tenure over the past 30 years.

The 23-year-old missed the cut at Travelers Championship two weeks ago to end that streak, but he's starting a new one and then some as he's carded a 13-under through two rounds at the Workday Charity Open.

After taking last week off, Morikawa got right back to it with a seven-under 65 followed by a six-under 66 to take a three-shot lead over Justin Thomas and Kevin Chappell at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio.

All facets of Morikawa's game have been working in perfect harmony, per PGATour.com statistics. He's gained over 5.5 strokes putting and has hit 77.78 percent of his greens in regulation. He also found the fairway on 85.71 percent of his drives Thursday.

Morikawa started on the back nine Friday and finished that stretch at one under for the day. His short game was on-point en route to a birdie on the 11th:

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But he caught fire on the front nine with four straight birdies on the second through fifth holes.

That run included 20'9" and 15'1" birdie putts and masterful iron play that created a shorter birdie attempt of 5'8".

He even had an outside chance at an eagle from 54'7" out on the par-five fifth but missed by 18 inches. A tap-in proved to be no problem.

His 16th birdie or better brought him to 13 under:

Morikawa spoke about the hot flat stick after his round, per Ryan Lavner of Golf Channel:

"I thought about it when I was driving the cart: I probably should have hit some putts. But the putter felt good. It feels good in my hands. Sets up really nicely. And I was looking through my yardage book and the greens book throughout the weather delay, to see what it was going to be like. I knew it was going to be an inside-right putt, hit it firm, and it caught the left side of the hole."

Morikawa has been largely excellent since the PGA Tour ended its three-month suspension because of the COVID-19 pandemic. He and Daniel Berger went to a sudden-death playoff at the Charles Schwab Challenge, but Berger ended up victorious.

A final-day 74 marred an otherwise great tournament for Morikawa at the RBC Heritage, where he found himself eight under entering Sunday.

Nothing really worked at Travelers en route to a three-over performance, but Morikawa has bounced back as he looks to take home his second PGA Tour win.

He spoke about his mindset entering the weekend, per Lavner:

"Whether I have the lead or not, I've got to go into the weekend feeling like I've got to make the same amount of birdies I have been the past two days. I feel like there's a lot of birdies out there for me the way I've been hitting it. So I've just got to keep that up, play smart and attack pins when it's available for me."

He won't have it easy, however. Chappell came on strong and finished Friday at 10 under thanks to an eight-under 64, which is the lowest round of the tournament. World No. 2 Thomas has produced a 68-66 to tie Chappell for second, and Sam Burns and Hideki Matsuyama sit tied for fourth at nine under after each player carded sub-70 rounds on both days.

Young up-and-coming star Viktor Hovland is lurking at eight under in sixth.

The second round is still ongoing after being called due to darkness.

That's because the tournament was twice suspended because of "dangerous weather situations," per PGA Tour Communications. A few batches of storms was the reason, per the Associated Press.

Every player is at least through 14 holes in the second round at this juncture, with 33 golfers still remaining. The cut currently sits at two under.