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SBNation.com – All Posts: Tom Kim’s viral U.S. Open round reaches historic proportions


123rd U.S. Open Championship, Tom Kim
Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images

Tom Kim is only 20 years old yet is playing like a veteran at the Los Angeles Country Club, the host of the 123rd U.S. Open.

Tom Kim, the 20-year-old out of South Korea, is making a name for himself Saturday at the 123rd U.S. Open. Well, in a funny way, the name had already been made. But more on that in a bit.

Kim entered Saturday’s third round at Los Angeles Country Club 1-over par. Knowing Rickie Fowler was the leader 11 shots ahead, it was believed Kim had no shot at his first major championship. That might very well be an incorrect assessment.

Tom Kim became just the fifth golfer in history to record a 29 during a front or back nine at any U.S. Open.

He joined Vijah Singh in 2003 at Olympia Fields, Louis Oosthuizen in 2015 at Chambers Bay, and Neal Lancaster who did it back to back in 1995 and 1996 at Shinnecock and Oakland Hills.

Incredibly, Kim was not done. He stuck his approach shot on the par-4 10th to within 10 feet and made another birdie. That has vaulted him up the leaderboard into a tie for 6th at 6-under for the tournament. Suddenly, he is just four shots off the lead.

This isn’t the only time Kim has made news at a major this year. The infamous muddy situation at the PGA Championship; that was Kim as well.

While attempting to find his ball down in a ditch, Kim went knee deep into the mud, literally. Cameras captured him coming out nearly up to his hip in swamp juice. He even changed his clothes right there on course and they covered it live on television.

He was immediately a viral sensation. Unfortunately, the rest of that tournament did not go well for him.

But if he keeps playing like this, Kim might very well write a different ending to his already prosperous young career.

He already has two career PGA Tour wins. But if he miraculously captures this U.S. Open, it might go down as the largest underdog story in golf history.

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