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Dustin Johnson takes the lead at LIV Golf's Portland Invitational

Saudi-fundedLIV Golf Series'The protest that marked the start of the first US stop became a bit quieter on Friday. , Focused Play at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club.

Moderate crowds and mild temperatures in the mid-1970s welcomed players in the emerging series funded by Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth funds trying to rock the PGA Tour. However, there was widespread criticism for human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia.

2020 Masters winner Dustin Johnson shared a lead with Carlos Ortiz of Mexico, who will enter the final round of the 54-hole tournament on Saturday. Johnson shot 4 under 68 on Friday to reach 8 under.

"I'm really happy with how I shake it," Johnson said. "Tomorrow, you just have to drive the fairway and you have to do the same thing. It feels like you're swinging an iron, so if you can get into the fairway, you'll get a lot of good looks. And obviously I'm rolling it well too. "

Orrtiz birdieed the last hole to draw 69 on Johnson as well.

Dustin Johnson, who is tied for the lead, hits a tee shot on the fifth hole during the second round of the Portland Invitational.
Getty Images

"I felt like I was playing really well." Said Ortiz. "I put myself in a good position."

There was a protester outside the club gate about 20 miles west of Portland, "Fallon Smart 2000- I had a sign that just said "2016".

Smart was 15 years old when he was killed by a hit-and-run driver in Portland. The Saudi Arabian National School in Oregon was charged with her death, but she removed her surveillance device before the start of his trial and she disappeared. US officials believe that the Saudi government has helped cheer him up.

The mood in Pumpkin Ridge was bright, with jugglers and other entertainment, interactive fan activities, and food carts serving a variety of dishes. The organizers did not announce the number of attendees, but said Saturday's final round was sold out.

Branden Grace was 6 unders behind 69, two shots behind the leader. Justin Harding was 5 under after 67, the highest score of the day among the 48 players.

Johnson has the largest gallery with Brooks Koepka, Phil Mickelson and Bryson DeChambeau, and all major winners have signed a new venture led by CEO Greg Norman.

Carlos Ortiz

The PGA Tour suspends all active members in the competition By doing so, we responded to the challenge of LIV Golf. At the first LIV event. People who played in Oregon were suspended unless they resigned from their tour membership.

LIV A big attraction for golfers is money. In addition to significant contract money, the 48-man field is competing for a $ 20 million wallet, with an additional $ 5 million in prize money for team competition. Charl Schwartzel won the London event (and team part) and earned $ 4.75 million.

There are no cuts, and even the lowest finishers earn $ 120,000 payday.

Critics say the tour is sportswashing and uses golf to undermine Saudi Arabia's human rights records, including the murder of U.S.-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018. It states that it is.

On Thursday, a number of families who lost their loved ones protested the tournament on September 11th. Of the 19 hijackers that day in 2001, 15 were Saudi citizens.