Englishman Richard Bland leads the US Open after 36 holes

48 year old Richard Bland is leading the field after 36 holes at the 121st US Open, and who would’ve guessed it. The story for Bland is really simple…he’s a grinder. He won just twice in over 600 events and he’s NEVER won on the PGA Tour. He played in 477 events on the European Tour before capturing his first victory earlier this year. This was the moment that Bland had waited so long for….

Bland may not be your favorite golfer or the most exciting pick for this week, but he’s a guy you can definitely root for once knowing his story. Bland lost his tour card 3 times and the most recent time was about 2 years ago when he was 46, so he went down to the European minor leagues to play in events in Finland and Slovakia. Bland has said on several interviews “As any golf career, you’re going to have peaks and troughs. Of course you are. But I just think every kind of sportsman, sportswoman, they have that never-die or that never-quit attitude, no matter whether it’s golf or it’s tennis or it’s boxing, whatever it is. The old saying is you get knocked down seven times, you get up eight. I’ve always had that kind of attitude that you just keep going. You never know in this game, you just keep going.”

This is certainly the attitude that Bland will need heading into the weekend at Torrey Pines with players like Brooks Koepka and Xander Schauffele trying to catch him. Notable players closely trailing Bland are Louis Oostuhuizen who is -4, Matthew Wolff at -4, Jon Rahm at -3, and Bubba Watson at -3. It’s going to take one hell of a weekend from Bland to pull this thing off. At the start of Thursday’s round, Bland was going off at 500-1 and he currently sits at 30-1 to win going into Saturday’s round. Regardless of how his weekend goes, it’s amazing that Bland has put himself in the position to win this year’s US Open.

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