Cabrera biggest of several big names headed home Friday

Updated: June 13, 2008

SAN DIEGO -- Defending champion Angel Cabrera came to the U.S. Open without his cigarette habit or his putting stroke.

Angel Cabrera

Lenny Ignelzi/AP Photo

Angel Cabrera likely has many fond memories of the U.S. Open. His first two rounds at Torrey Pines might not be among them.

Fortunately, he didn't seek his nicotine fix here.

The Argentinean won't be spending the weekend playing golf at Torrey Pines after shooting 79-76 (13 over), joining a celebrated list of ex-major champions and big names who missed the cut, which came at 7 over.

A total of 80 players survived. The top 60 players and ties were guaranteed a spot in the final two rounds, plus all players within 10 shots of leader Stuart Appleby, who is 3 under.

Justin Rose and Ben Curtis finished 9 over for 36 holes at Torrey Pines. Charles Howell III finished 11 over. Colin Montgomerie was 14 over.

Several players -- including '07 Masters champ Zach Johnson and J.B. Holmes -- missed out on the weekend when Appleby birdied the 18th hole to close his round, leaving the players at 8-over on the outside looking in.

Skating in on the cut-line number were Vijay Singh (71-78), Steve Stricker (73-76), Boo Weekley (73-76) and Anthony Kim (74-75).

Cabrera is the first reigning titlist to depart after two rounds since Michael Campbell in 2005.

Campbell joined Cabrera with the weekend off. He shot 83 after an opening-round 78. Campbell hasn't made the cut on the PGA Tour this year in four starts, and he has made just two cuts in nine starts on the European Tour.

On the flip side, three of the 11 amateurs made the cut. Derek Fathauer, a 22-year-old who made the semifinals of the U.S. Amateur Public Links and quarterfinals of the U.S. Amateur last year, shot 73-73 (4 over) and is tied for 35th. Michael Thompson, a 23-year-old who lost in the finals of last year's U.S. Amateur, shot 74-73 and is tied for 42nd.

Oklahoma State All-American Rickie Fowler, who lost in an 11-man Open qualifier playoff but later got in when Shaun Micheel withdrew, shot 79 Friday to go with his opening-round 70 and made the cut on the number.

The first-round leaders didn't fare too well Friday, but both at least managed to make the cut. After their U.S. Opens each began with 68s, Kevin Streelman shot a 77 and fell back into a tie for 22nd place and Justin Hicks carded an 80 and a tie for 49th.

Another name that started Friday morning high on the leaderboard also fell like a rock during the day. Eric Axley followed up his impressive 69 Thursday with a 79 to barely make the cut.

On the flip side, Andrew Svoboda -- who managed to get into the U.S. Open field only when Brett Wetterich withdrew -- went 77-71 to earn a weekend tee time at Torrey Pines.

-- David Kraft,



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No Happy Returns

With Angel Cabrera's 79-76 for his opening 36 holes at Torrey Pines, it marks the fifth time in the past 15 years that a defending champion has missed the cut the year after his U.S. Open victory.

-- David S. Bearman,
ESPN Research

Player Year Score
Angel Cabrera 2008 +13
Michael Campbell 2006 +12
Retief Goosen 2002 +14
Ernie Els 1996 +7
Lee Janzen 1994 +6


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