Third Round — World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational — Firestone Country Club (South Course) — Akron, Ohio —
Jim Furyk’s four-shot lead through two rounds evaporated over the course of round three at Firestone Country Club at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.
Furyk, who has a pair of runner-up finishes at this event including a memorable 2001 playoff loss to Tiger Woods, navigated around the layout holding serve and shot 1-under-69, while others mounted a birdie surge.
England’s Justin Rose, 8th in the Official World Golf Rankings, rallied with a 7-under-63 to tie for the lead through three rounds. He will play with Furyk in the final pairing Sunday as a 14-to-1 betting favorite (to start the week at www.ladbrokes.com).
Both are 9-under and among just 16 players under par at Firestone.
Shane Lowry, who played in the final pair Saturday, held his own and shot 3-under-67. He is alone in third place at 7-under overall, while a host of high-profile players are T-4 at 5-under including Ian Poulter, Bubba Watson and Henrik Stenson.
Poulter made a big move shooting 65 earlier in the day along with Steven Bowditch, who fired a 63. Bowditch, who won the Valero Texas Open in 2014, is now also in that group at T-4.
Rose won the Zurich Classic in April and finished T-4 last week at the Quicken Loans National. His back-nine 31 featured four birdies in the final six holes. But, can he back it up Sunday when the heat is on?
Furyk, a champion from earlier in 2015 at the RBC Heritage, might be in a great position but the length of the course seemed to impact him Saturday as he wasn’t able to get the consistent birdie looks that the chasers created.
Look for someone in the T-4 group to make a move to pressure the final pair. Perhaps, Watson and Stenson — both Top 10 players in the world — have the fire power to challenge Sunday.
World No. 2 Jordan Spieth failed to mount a charge Saturday. He shot 72 and sits T-17 through three rounds.
Other Golf News:
- LPGA founder Louise Suggs, a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame, passed away at age 91 earlier this week. Suggs won 61 times on the LPGA Tour including 11 major championships.
- The United States Golf Association hosts the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship next week in Portland. The LPGA Tour is also in the same city for the Cambia Portland Classic.
- Miguel Angel Jimenez engineered a 9-under-61 to tie Colin Montgomerie at the top of the leader board at the Champions Tour’s Shaw Charity Classic in Canada. Both are 12-under heading in the final round Sunday — two shots clear of Jeff Maggert, who has two wins in 2015 including the U.S. Senior Open.
- Several players are in the mix at the PGA Tour’s Barracuda Championship in Reno. Using the Stableford Modified Scoring System, J.J. Henry leads at +39 points at the moment with several proven champions challenging including David Toms, Jonas Blixt, Robert Garrigus, Steve Flesch and Retief Goosen.