Watson dug his own grave with an opening 76 and an even-par 70 on
Friday proved too little, too late, as he fell one shot shy of
qualifying for the weekend of the year's second major.
His love affair with Augusta National, where in April he won his
second green jacket in three years, does not carry over to Pinehurst
No. 2, as he freely admitted.
He does not like the look of the course and thinks the greens are
too small to suit his game.
"I'm still preparing myself for the rest of the year," he told
reporters after mixing four birdies with four bogeys in his second
Only five players have won the Masters and U.S. Open in the same
year, most recently Tiger Woods in 2002.
Other notables to miss the cut included former world number ones Lee
Westwood and Luke Donald and reigning PGA Championship winner Jason
Westwood had made the cut in his past nine U.S. Open appearances but
he could not extend his stellar record after shooting rounds of 75
He is considered one of the best players not to have won a major,
despite several close calls. At 41, time is not on his side.
[to top of second column]
Fellow Englishman Donald, on the other hand, has a poor U.S. Open
record. A tie for eighth last year is his only top-10 finish in 11
He finished at six-over this year, the same score as Dufner, who
tied for fourth in the past two U.S. Opens and came into the event
in top this year form having lost a playoff at the Crowne Plaza
Invitational three weeks ago.
(Reporting by Andrew Both)
[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.