Johnson leads packed leaderboard at PGA C’ship, Woods at T59th

San Francisco, Aug 9 : Tiger Woods is too far back to mount a serious challenge at the PGA Championships even as a dozen players are within three shots of the sole leader Dustin Johnson after 54 holes.

Johnson will be chased hard by a lot of past Major winners and some fresh faces, but none more than Brooks Koepka, who is two behind. Koepka may well have been with him or even better but for that three-bogey run from 13th to the 15th, which threatened to push him way behind. But birdies on 16th and 18th kept him in touch with Johnson.

One shot behind Johnson at 8-under is the young brigade of Collin Morikawa (65), Cameron Champ (67) and Scottie Scheffler (65).

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Woods had all pars except a bogey on the 8th on front nine and then came three bogeys in a row from 11th to 13th. Birdies on 16th and 18th salvaged the card to 72, the same as on the second day. Overall, he is still over par at 2-over and is T-59th.

Rory McIlroy (71) is T-41st at even par for three rounds, while World No. 1 Justin Thomas (68) is T-34.

Paul Casey (68), still searching for his maiden Major after two decades as a pro and 15 years after joining the PGA Tour, is tied fourth with Koepka (69).

The lead changed hands often enough to whet the appetite of all those following the 2020’s first Major, albeit on the TV screens.

Koepka kept alive his chances of a third straight Wanamaker Trophy, a feat which was last achieved by Walter Hagen, who won four in a row from 1924 to 1927, when the Major was played as match play.

Scheffler, the PGA TOUR rookie, bogeyed his last hole for a 65 and was one shot behind with Cameron Champ (67), who is one of the biggest hitters on the Tour.

Other contenders include Jason Day (70) and Justin Rose (70) at T-7 at 6-under and then there was Bryson DeChambeau, who had a 95-foot putt for birdie on 18th in his 65. Apart from Day and Rose, the seven-man group at 6-under and in T-7 are DeChambeau, Tony Finau, Daniel Berger and Tommy Fleetwood.

Woods is, however, way back. He did not find his first birdie till the 16th and he has not been able to find the form and touch that carried him a 15th Major at the Masters last year.

Li Haotong (73), the first Chinese player to lead after any round at a major, still had the lead through 12 holes but then his tee shot on 13th got stuck in the trees and he ended with a double. He had further bogeys on 14th and 16th and slipped to 5-under and T-13.

Disclaimer: This story is auto-generated from IANS service.

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