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Jason Dufner narrowly missed out on the lowest round in Major history at Oak Hill but ended on a course-record 63 to hold a two-shot halfway lead in the US PGA.
The 36-year-old sits in control at the final Major of the year but could have made history if he had managed to sink a 12-foot putt.
Dufner settled for a birdie and ended the day nine under par to place himself in a commanding position ahead of 2011 runner-up Adam Scott, who carded 68, Matt Kuchar who hit 66 and Jim Furyk, who went round on 68 to all finish seven under.
US Open champion Justin Rose remained well in with a chance of claiming another title as he placed himself in the running with a competitive round of 66 to end up on six under.
Once again Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy demonstrated some poor form which has seen them struggle to claim recent silverware.
Defending champion McIlroy was in real danger of failing to make a second straight cut at a |Major after falling to four over 10 holes in, he did manage to dig in and fought back to card four birdies in his last seven holes for a 71 and level par.
Leader Dufner said: “It’s tough. I showed a little bit of nerves there leaving it short (at the last). It’s one you would like to gun and have a chance at history (but) I am in pretty good company.
“The history of the game is something that is dear to my heart. To be part of history is a neat accomplishment. I never thought a guy from north east Ohio would be able to do these things.”