AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The Latest on the Dell Technologies Match Play (all times CDT):
No one is playing better than Patrick Cantlay at the Dell Technologies Match Play. No one is having to work harder.
Through two rounds at Austin Country Club, Cantlay would be the equivalent of 15-under par. In both matches, he had to sweat it out on the 18th green for a 1-up victory.
Cantlay and Carlos Ortiz of Mexico both played so well Thursday that they halved 15 of the 18 holes. Cantlay took the lead with a 6-foot birdie putt on the 14th hole. They matched 6-footers for par and 5-footers for birdie, and then Cantlay won the match when Ortiz missed a 15-foot birdie putt on the final hole.
Cantlay now is 2-0 in group play and faces one more match against Hideki Matsuyama to advance to the knockout stage on the weekend. He doesn't expect it to be easy.
The second round of group play at the Dell Technologies Match Play could be the end of the line for some of the top stars if they lose another match Thursday. That includes Justin Thomas, Bryson DeChambeau and Rory McIlroy.
All three lost their opening matches. One more loss and they will be mathematically eliminated from being able to win their groups to advance to the weekend knockout stage.
Thomas is the No. 2 seed. He was trounced by Matt Kuchar, and now faces defending champion Kevin Kisner. McIlroy, who lost in 13 holes to Ian Poulter, faces Lanto Griffin.
DeChambeau was beaten by France's Antoine Rozner and now plays Si Woo Kim.
DeChambeau has yet to win a match as a professional. He won the U.S. Amateur in 2015. Since then, he lost his singles match at the 2018 Ryder Cup to Alex Noren. He lost all three of his matches at the Dell Match Play in 2019, and he halved with Adam Hadwin at the Presidents Cup.
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