Walker leads Kuchar by 2 at Sony Open in Hawaii

Third Round –PGA Tour – Sony Open –Waialae Country Club – Honolulu, Hawaii –

Jimmy Walker rallied to finish with 11 straight one-putts Saturday in round three of the Sony Open in Honolulu.

Walker, who was runner-up at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions Monday after losing in a playoff in Maui, fired a career-best 62 at Waialee Country Club to reach 16-under and the overall lead through 54 holes in the PGA Tour’s first full-field event of 2015.

At No. 14 in the Official World Golf Ranking, Walker entered the week as the second-best betting option at at 14-to-1 odds to win. He is defending champion here finishing 17-under last year winning by a shot.

Matt Kuchar birdied two of the last three holes to finish solo second. He is 14-under and plays in the final group with Walker. Kuchar has a run of three straight Top 8 efforts at the Sony. Kuchar was a co-leader through two rounds.

Brian Harman and John Merritt are T-3 at 13-under and three back.

Tim Clark (12-under and T-5) still has a shot to win Sunday. He is a recent two-time runner-up at the Sony (2011 and 2013). The layout fits his game.

K.J. Choi and Harris English, who logged a fourth-place finish at the Sony in 2014, are both in the Top 10 with 18 holes to play. They are part of a group of nearly a dozen players at 8-under.

Walker is in unfamiliar territory as this is only his second 54-hole lead.

Other Golf news:

  • Martin Kaymer (20-under) must defend his six-shot lead through 54 holes to capture the European Tour’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship. Kaymer rolled to a big lead and eyes his fourth HSBC title. Rory McIlroy, Charl Schwartzel, Victor Dubuisson and Jamie Donaldson are all in the Top 10.
  • The PGA Tour heads to California next week for the Humana Challenge in La Quinta with PGA West Palmer Course serving as the host layout. Patrick Reed, who captured the 2015 season opener in Maui at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions, serves as defending champion in the California desert.
  • The European Tour hosts the CommercialBank Qatar Masters next week. Sergio Garcia is the defending champion.
  • Both the Champions Tour and LPGA Tour begin 2015 seasons later this month.
  • Aussie Robert Allenby, a four-time winner on the PGA Tour, is recovering from what is being reported as a mugging Friday night outside a wine bar in Honolulu. Authorities are investigating. Graphic photos of Allenby’s face show some of the damage he sustained.