Poulter McIlroy giving chase at Abu Dhabi


ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – Martin Kaymer took a one-stroke lead at the Abu Dhabi Championship on Saturday after shooting a third straight 5-under 67.

Kaymer was at 15-under 201 after the third round of the European Tour event at the 7,510-yard Abu Dhabi Golf Club course, where the German won the title in 2007 and finished second last year.

Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland and Ian Poulter of England were tied for second after both also shot 67s. Peter Hanson of Sweden was fourth at 199 after a 70.

Kaymer is playing this season with a plate in his foot that doctors put in after he broke three bones following a go-karting accident last summer.

“If I have the plate taken out I will need another two to two and a half weeks to recover,” he said. “And I never really get a break for three weeks during the season. I don’t want to miss tournaments in a Ryder Cup year. But I do seem to be able to play good golf with it still in place.”

And it’s worth putting up with a bit of pain to play on a course where he’s had success.

“There are certain shots where I still have to be careful when I play with the ball below my feet; it hurts a bit,” he said. “But I do like this course. I always seem to play well here because all the tee shots seem to suit my eye.”

Kaymer began the third round two shots behind the halfway leader Rick Kulacz, but the Australian struggled to a 73 and was four shots behind.

Sergio Garcia of Spain had a 74 and was six shots back, while Anthony Kim of the U.S. shot a 68 and was seven strokes off the lead.