BMW Championship: Rory McIlroy three shots off the lead in Chicago

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Hideki Matsuyama celebrates after making a monster putt on his last hole -3 H Matsuyama (Jpn); -2 T Duncan (US); -1 M Hughes (Can); E H Higgs (US), T Finau (US), B Horschel (US), L Griffin (US), S Munoz (Col), M Hubbard (US), R McIlroy (NI), A Ancer (Mex) Selected others: +1 D Johnson; +3 T Woods (US), P Casey (Eng), J Thomas (US), B DeChambeau (US), T Hatton (Eng) Complete leaderboard

Rory McIlroy from Northern Ireland and Matthew Fitzpatrick from England are three strokes behind leader Hideki Matsuyama after the first round of the BMW Championship.

McIlroy & # 39; s round featured a mix of four birdies and four bogeys as he fought his way to level-par 70.

Fitzpatrick registered a double bogey on his penultimate hole to also place 70.

Only three players shot below par in Olympia Fields and Japan's Matsuyama leads through one after taking a birdie putt at his last 67 feet to card a 67.

American Tyler Duncan is second at bottom two and Canadian Mackenzie Hughes is third at one bottom in Chicago.

Four-time Grand Winner McIlroy, who has recorded another top-10 finish since golf returned in June, said, “I said last week if you need someone to shoot in between par and two under, I'm your man.

"So I like these circumstances. It's a bit weird. As my game feels right now, it's just as easy for me to shoot par here as it was last week in Boston, for whatever reason.

"But this is good golf. You really have to think about things. It's fun to play another round of golf."

New world number one Dustin Johnson is one over, while fellow American Tiger Woods, winner of 15 majors, is still two shots behind.

The 44-year-old was a fixture at the bottom after six holes, but three consecutive bogeys halfway through his round undid his good work and he ended up with a 73. England's Paul Casey, who finished second at the PGA Championship, is also third.

Tournament started on schedule despite delays in other US sports to protest racial injustices in the aftermath of police shooting in Wisconsin of African America ican Jacob Blake.

American golfer Cameron Champ – who has a black father and a white mother – wore a black and a white shoe. On the white shoe he had written "Jacob Blake BLM".

The BMW Championship is the second of three events in the FedEx Cup playoffs of the US circuit that will determine the PGA Tour champion for this season.

The top 70 players in the season's points standings will participate in the BMW Championship, which will decide the 30 players to participate in next month's Tour Championship ending in East Lake in Atlanta.

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