Noren, Warren lead U.S. Open qualifying, Monty's long trip in vain

Swede Alex Noren and Briton Marc Warren booked their tickets for next month's U.S. Open after finishing top of 36-hole qualifying at Walton Heath on Monday.

Former Ryder Cup captain Colin Montgomerie failed in his bid after making a 900-mile overnight trip to Scotland and back to fetch a putter.

He left Wentworth at 1400 on Sunday after a closing 81 in the PGA Championship on the outskirts of London. He arrived home at around 2000 and, after sharing dinner with his family, jumped back in his car to make the journey to the south of England.

Spain's Jose Maria Olazabal, who has taken over as Ryder Cup skipper from Montgomerie for this year's match in Illinois, also missed out at Walton Heath.

Noren and Warren led the way on nine-under-par 135 and were joined by nine other qualifiers.

Italian Matteo Manassero, British duo Lee Slattery and Matthew Baldwin, Ireland's Peter Lawrie, French pair Raphael Jacquelin and Gregory Bourdy, Finn Mikko Ilonen, South African George Coetzee and Dane Soren Kjeldsen also went through.

Noren will be making his second U.S. Open appearance, having qualified at Walton Heath 12 months ago.

"I'm very happy," he told reporters. "I was really tired this morning after Wentworth last week but now I feel a lot better."

Twice European Tour winner Warren will be competing in his first major.

"I burned the edge of the hole quite a few times so I could have gone even lower than nine under but I'll certainly take it," said the Scot.

The U.S. Open will be held at the Olympic Club in San Francisco from June 14-17.

(Writing by Tony Jimenez; editing by Ed Osmond)