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Dufner leads PGA Tour stop, crowded leader board in Abu Dhabi features Rory, Rickie

Jason Dufner current official PGA TOUR headshot. (Photo by Stan Badz/PGA TOUR)

Jason Dufner current official PGA TOUR headshot. (Photo by Stan Badz/PGA TOUR)

Weekend Preview – PGA Tour – CareerBuilder Challenge – PGA West TPC Stadium Course (host) – La Quinta, California –

Jason Dufner stands alone at 15-under overall through 36 holes at the PGA Tour’s CareerBuilder Challenge in the California desert.

The 38-year-old posted a back-nine 30 Friday and needed a career low 22 putts to secure the lead with a 64-65 start.

The 2013 PGA Championship winner, who opened the week as a 28-to-1 betting selection at Station Casinos in Las Vegas, tees off Saturday at 9:10 a.m. local time at La Quinta Country Club.

The three-course rotation means there is a cut after Saturday’s action. The final round will be played at host course – PGA West TPC Stadium Course.

Jamie Lovemark opens round three in second at 14-under. There are a host of players currently at 12-under and T-3 including India’s Anirban Lahiri, Jason Gore and defending champion Bill Haas.

The group at 11-under features former major champions Angel Cabrera and Phil Mickelson. Matt Kuchar (10-under) is part of a wave at T-15. Mickelson, a two-time champion at this event, is coming off a round of eight birdies against a lone bogey.

Look for a bunched leader board throughout round three action. Golf Channel has the television coverage.

Mickelson opened the week as a 25-1 pick, while Haas was 20-1.

Other Golf news:

  • Five players – including Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, Brendan Grace and Ian Poulter — are tied for the lead at 10-under at the European Tour’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship in the United Arab Emirates. When play was suspended due to darkness, there were another 16 within three shots of the lead including Henrik Stenson and Anday Sullivan at 9-under.
  • Grace was 6-under through 16 holes on his day when played stopped, while Rory has nine holes to complete his third round. McIlroy is a four-time runner-up at the event and opened the week as a 4-to-1 co-betting favorite to capture the title.
  • Duffy Waldorf (12-under) leads the Champions Tour 2016 opener in Hawaii at Champions Tourthe Mitsubishi Electric Championship by a shot after carding 7-under-65 in round two. Tom Lehman, Davis Love III and Tom Pernice Jr. are T-2 heading into the weekend. Waldorf open his maiden Champions Tour event in November at the Toshiba Classic.
  • Rolex Ranking World No. 1 Lydia Ko is skipping next week’s LPGA Tour 2016 debut event at the Pure Silk Bahamas LPGA Classic. She is not injury but cited LPGAtour logoNEWstrategy for a long season. The next three players in the rankings – Inbee Park, Stacy Lewis and Lexi Thompson – are in the field.
  • World No. 1 Jordan Spieth finished 54 holes in Abu Dhabi before darkness suspended play. He is T-15 at 7-under. He is tied with first-round leader amateur Bryson DeChambeau, who slipped back with a 72 in round two.