-Thomas on the meaning of his record-setting 63.
Powerful winds buffeted the US Open on Sunday as the final round got under way with a cluster of inexperienced contenders aiming to break their major duck. The 21-year-old South Korean became the youngest Players Championship victor in history last month.
The story of the day, however, belonged to Thomas, who shot a nine-under 63 to break Johnny Miller's record low score of eight-under 63 at Oakmont in the 1973 US Open. And he wasn't through.
Harman closed with two birdies and three tough pars for a 5-under 67 that gave him a one-shot lead at 12-under 204. And then Morgan came undone.
Dougherty struggled in the third round, with five bogeys, two double bogeys and just one birdie in an 8-over 80.
On a morning when winds deviated between 10 and 15 miles an hour, and some tricky pin placements added to the challenge on approach shots, Casey's powers of recovery enabled him to get into position to challenge over the weekend.
Fleetwood picked up a victory in Abu Dhabi on the European Tour, while Fowler is widely regarded right now as the best golfer never to have won a major.
And despite starting his second round with bogeys on his first two holes, the South African bounced back to record a superb 66 which he matched in the third round. Rickie Fowler, who led after Round One, is in fifth at -10. No one had a chance.
Cameron Champ was the lowest amateur heading into the final round, but he finished with a 4-over 76 to drop back to even par for the tournament.
Virginia Beach resident Marc Leishman, 0-for-23 at majors in his career, will start round three just three shots off the lead.
Gusts are forecast to pick up on Sunday, when a new major victor appears all but certain to be crowned with none of the top 16 on the leaderboard having previously taken out one of golf's premier strokeplay events. A two-shot lead on this course with this board is basically nothing, and Fowler has shown in the past that he's a closer (2015 Players Championship, 2016 Scottish Open). He made a 27-footer for birdie on No. 17 before the history-making finish.
"If it was like this [windy] all week, two-under would be leading", said Els following his final round 74 to finish at seven-over for the tournament. "But it isn't a US Open course that I'm familiar with the way it was set-up".
He then drilled a 300-yard second shot to around eight feet before rolling in his eagle putt to roars from the galleries.
Defending champion Dustin Johnson probably didn't feel so badly by the end of a most peculiar day.
He was at 14-under par at the turn.