Green Stretches Lead to Three in Austria

By Sports NetworkJune 9, 2007, 4:00 pm
European TourVIENNA, Austria -- Australian Richard Green extended his lead to three strokes through three rounds of the BA-CA Golf Open.
 
Green posted a 4-under 67 Saturday at Fontana Golf Club to complete 54 holes at 15-under-par 198.
 
England's Richard McEvoy climbed into a second place at 12-under-par 201 thanks to a third-round 64. Miguel Angel Jimenez and Steven Jeppesen each shot 69 on Saturday and share third place at minus-11.
 
Green is on track for his first win since claiming his lone European Tour title at the 1997 Dubai Desert Classic. He got off to a steady start with eight straight pars.
 
Martin Erlandsson, who played in the final pairing with Green, birdied the third to join Green in the lead at 11 under. Erlandsson had several chances to grab the lead on his own, but could not convert.
 
The 36-year-old Green finally got on the board with a birdie on the par-5 ninth. Around the turn, he rolled in consecutive 9-foot birdie putts from the 12th to move to 14 under, two clear of McEvoy.
 
Green parred his next four holes to remain there. At the par-5 18th, Green two-putted for birdie to finish three clear of the field as he has played the 18th at 4 under through three rounds.
 
'I feel comfortable on the course, it suits the way I like to putt,' admitted Green. 'I'll be fairly anxious to win because it's been a long time, but I won't be desperate because I'm not going to put any undue pressure on myself. It's hard to put a finger on why I've not won again, but I do now have more self-belief.'
 
McEvoy jumped from a share of 14th into second with a solid round. He tripped to a bogey on the second to open his round, but came back with birdies on three and four.
 
The Englishman turned in 8 under thanks to birdies at six and nine. Four more birdies on the back nine moved McEvoy into second place at 12 under.
 
'It's a bit tough at times when they are going out and winning tournaments, especially Luke (Donald), and you remember being at their standard, but it does give you the determination to do it,' said McEvoy of his 2001 Walker Cup teammates Donald, Graeme McDowell, Nick Dougherty and Marc Warren.
 
McEvoy has had a tough start to his season as he has missed the cut in six of his first seven starts and eight of 11 overall.
 
Swedes Johan Skold and Michael Jonzon each posted 7-under 64s Saturday to move into a share of fifth place at 10-under-par 203. They were joined there by David Park (68).
 
Chris Gane (64), Jean-Francois Remesy (65), Gary Orr (66), Jarmo Sandelin (69), Shaun P. Webster (68) and Graeme Storm (69) are tied for eighth at minus-9.
 
Erlandsson stumbled on the back nine with a bogey on 15 and a double-bogey at 16. He slid into a share of 14th at 8-under-par 205.
 
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    Watch: McIlroy gives Fleetwood a birthday cake

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 19, 2018, 2:58 pm

    Tommy Fleetwood turned 27 on Friday. He celebrated with some good golf – a 4-under 68 in Abu Dhabi, leaving him only two shots back in his title defense – and a birthday cake, courtesy of Rory Mcllroy.

    While giving a post-round interview, Fleetwood was surprised to see McIlroy approaching with a cake in hand.

    “I actually baked this before we teed off,” McIlroy joked.

    Fleetwood blew out the three candles – “three wishes!” – and offered McIlroy a slice.  

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    DJ shoots 64 to surge up leaderboard in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 1:48 pm

    Dustin Johnson stood out among a star-studded three-ball that combined to shoot 18 under par with just one bogey Friday at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    Shaking off a sloppy first round at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, Johnson matched the low round of the day with a 64 that put him within four shots of Thomas Pieters’ lead.

    “I did everything really well,” Johnson said. “It was a pretty easy 64.”

    Johnson made four bogeys during an even-par 72 on Thursday and needed a solid round Friday to make the cut. Before long, he was closer to the lead than the cut line, making birdie on three of the last four holes and setting the pace in a group that also included good rounds from Rory McIlroy (66) and Tommy Fleetwood (68).

    “Everyone was hitting good shots,” McIlroy said. “That’s all we were seeing, and it’s nice when you play in a group like that. You feed off one another.” 


    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship


    Coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, Johnson is searching for his first regular European Tour title. He tied for second at this event a year ago.

    Johnson’s second-round 64 equaled the low round of the day (Jorge Campillo and Branden Grace). 

    “It was just really solid all day long,” Johnson said. “Hit a lot of great shots, had a lot of looks at birdies, which is what I need to do over the next two days if I want to have a chance to win on Sunday.” 

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    Closing eagle moves Rory within 3 in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:57 pm

    What rust? Rory McIlroy appears to be in midseason form.

    Playing competitively for the first time since Oct. 8, McIlroy completed 36 holes without a bogey Friday, closing with an eagle to shoot 6-under 66 to sit just three shots back at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    “I’m right in the mix after two days and I’m really happy in that position,” he told reporters afterward.

    McIlroy took a 3 ½-month break to heal his body, clear his mind and work on his game after his first winless year since 2008, his first full season as a pro.

    He's back on track at a familiar playground, Abu Dhabi Golf Club, where he’s racked up eight top-11s (including six top-3s) in his past nine starts there.


    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship


    McIlroy opened with a 69 Thursday, then gave himself even more chances on Day 2, cruising along at 4 under for the day when he reached the par-5 closing hole. After launching a 249-yard long iron to 25 feet, he poured in the eagle putt to pull within three shots of Thomas Pieters (65). 

    Despite the layoff, McIlroy edged world No. 1 Dustin Johnson, coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, by a shot over the first two rounds. 

    “DJ is definitely the No. 1 player in the world right now, and one of, if not the best, driver of the golf ball," McIlroy said. "To be up there with him over these first two days, it proves to me that I’m doing the right things and gives me a lot of confidence going forward.”

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    Duke to fill in for injured Pavin at CareerBuilder

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:25 pm

    Ken Duke will fill in for Corey Pavin for the next two rounds of the CareerBuilder Challenge – with nothing at stake but his amateur partner’s position on the leaderboard.

    Pavin was 4 over par when he withdrew after 17 holes Thursday because of a neck injury. Tournament officials contacted Duke, the first alternate, and asked if he would take Pavin’s spot and partner with Luis Lopez for the next two rounds, even though he would not receive any official money.

    Duke accepted and explained his decision on Twitter:

    Playing on past champion’s status, the 48-year-old Duke has made only four starts this season, with a best finish of a tie for 61st at the RSM Classic.

    Pavin received a sponsor exemption into the event, his first PGA Tour start since the 2015 Colonial.