Phil Mickelson
Mickelson avoids the worst of the rain and wind at Royal Troon to hold lead.Getty

Phil Mickelson has retained his lead at The Open after weather conditions wreaked havoc on the chasing pack at Royal Troon. 2013 champion Mickelson took full advantage of favourable conditions to extend his lead to 10 under par, with Henrik Stenson keeping pace a shot behind.

Denmark's Soren Kjeldsen and Keegan Bradley sit three shots off the lead at seven under with defending champion Zach Johnson two shots further behind.

Patrick Reed, who started the day three shots off leader Mickelson, fell to two under, with Jordan Spieth among those most affected by the wind and rain that swept through west Scotland in the late afternoon. Spieth, along with Masters champion Danny Willet, finished their round four over par.

The weekend cut of four over means Spieth, Willett, Bubba Watson and Colin Montgomerie survive, as did Rory McIlroy, who started the day three under, finishing his rain-sodden afternoon alongside Reed at two under.

After coming within inches of making major history in his opening round on Thursday (14 July), Mickelson carded two under-par 69 on Friday to extend his lead. The American covered the front nine in 33 shots but as conditions started to turn, he dropped his first shot of the championship on the 12th hole, managing to keep his lead ahead of Stenson who enjoyed a superb round. The Swede made six birdies to catch up, while American duo Tony Finau and Bill Haas also kept pace, both finishing four under.

US Open champion Dustin Johnson recorded two double bogeys but recovered to finish with a 69 on day two, good enough to finish two under.

After seeing his round disrupted by the weather conditions, McIlroy told Radio 5 live: "It is hard to not get disheartened, you have to try your utmost to keep everything together, you know you are not anywhere near the lead, you have to keep optimistic going into the weekend.

Despite making the cut, Spieth admitted defeat in pursuit of his first Open championship. "I'm looking to put nice, smooth, solid swings, very confident putts on it to lead into the PGA Championship, because I know my chances here are likely finished."