Rose Holds Slim Lead in Canada

By Sports NetworkSeptember 9, 2006, 4:00 pm
PGA Tour (75x100)ANCASTER, Ontario -- All of a sudden, Justin Rose looks like he might finally break through.
One week after posting his best finish in nearly a year, Rose is clinging to a slim lead heading into the final round of the Canadian Open after shooting a 5-under 65 on Saturday.
Justin Rose
Justin Rose holds a one stroke lead over a large group of players going into the fourth and final round.
Rose is at 11-under-par 199 with Sean O'Hair, Trevor Immelman, Bart Bryant and Jonathan Byrd all sitting just one shot back at Hamilton Golf & Country Club.
Following a two-hour rain delay, it was a day-long battle for the lead, and Rose came out on top following a bogey-free effort.
Sunday, he will be seeking his first PGA Tour win.
'For me, it's still like that good fresh feeling,' Rose said of his lead. 'I'm not getting frustrated by [not winning] yet. I'd like to think of it like riding a bike. Once you've done it, you never really forget.'
Rose tied for fourth last week at the Deutsche Bank Championship, his best finish since last October. He has only held one other 54-hole on the PGA TOUR, at last year's Buick Championship, where he finished third.
Though he has never won on the PGA TOUR, Rose owns four international victories with all of them coming in 2002.
But a stateside win has been a long time coming for the player who tied for fourth at the 1998 British Open as a 17-year-old amateur.
'I'd like just to give myself more and more legitimate chances,' Rose said. 'Obviously the more you knock on the door, eventually it's going to open.'
Among the players tied for second place, O'Hair, having an up-and-down season after claiming Rookie of the Year honors in 2005, turned out to be Rose's toughest challenger.
O'Hair shot a 4-under 66 and was tied for the lead following a 3-foot birdie putt at the seventh hole. But Rose took the lead for good with a 4- foot birdie at the 10th.
O'Hair fell behind by as many as three shots after that, but collected back- to-back birdies at the 13th and 14th holes to get within one.
Immelman was also tied for the lead following a 9-foot birdie putt at the ninth. He had two bogeys on the back nine, though, then made up two shots when he eagled the 17th to get to 10 under.
A first-time winner at the Western Open in July, Immelman had his second consecutive 4-under 66 on Saturday.
'That eagle on 17 really helped my cause,' said Immelman, who claimed his first PGA win at the Western Open in July.
'I was struggling on the back nine, especially with the putting. Pretty much all day just wasn't really striking the putts solidly, wasn't judging the speed properly. That eagle on 17 really helped my cause quite a bit.'
Bryant, a two-time winner last year, earned his share of second place by finishing with three straight birdies. He capped the run by knocking his approach within 5 feet at the 18th, setting up the last birdie to finish off a round of 6-under 64.
'It definitely put me in position where if I go out and shoot a real low round tomorrow I might have a chance to win,' Bryant said.
Byrd, who was tied for second place on Friday night as well, shot a 3-under 67 to remain in that position. He had four birdies and one bogey on Saturday.
Not to be ignored, world No. 3 Jim Furyk lies two shots off the lead at 9-under 201 following a 3-under 67 in the third round.
Joining Furyk in sixth place were Brett Quigley (67) and Steve Lowery (65).
Camilo Villegas and Arron Oberholser, who shared the third-round lead with Jesper Parnevik, are knotted in ninth place at 8-under 202 after shooting 69 Saturday.
Parnevik had a 70 and leads a group of three players who sit one shot further back at 203.
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