ERIN, Wisconsin, June 17 (Reuters) - Haotong Li made a small piece of history by surviving the halfway cut at the U.S. Open, but closed out a frustrating third round with a quadruple-bogey at the par-five 18th on Saturday.
Li found the rough with his tee shot on 18 and hacked it out with an eight-iron, but his ball settled into a deep divot on the fairway, before his third shot bounded through the green into more nasty grass, from where he took six more shots to hole out for a 10-over 82 at Erin Hills.
The final-hole struggle was in marked contrast to his second-round rally, when he became the first player from China to make the cut at a U.S. Open, according to U.S. Golf Association records.
On Friday, Li birdied two of his final three holes to make the cut with a shot to spare, even hitting the flagstick with his approach shot at his 17th hole, the par-four eighth.
Li turned professional at age 16 and won the Volvo China Open last year on the European Tour, securing a two-year membership and qualifying for the Rio Olympics.
He is hoping to receive a few sponsor exemptions on the PGA Tour this year and earn enough FedExCup points to have a shot at the Web.com Tour Finals and a path to a PGA Tour card.
Li is among the Chinese golfers following in the footsteps of Liang Wen-chong, who finished eighth at the 2010 PGA Championship. (Editing by Andrew Both)
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