Date: August 09, 2009
Author: PA Sport

Woods makes his move

Padraig Harrington kept a charging Tiger Woods at bay on Saturday and will take a three-shot lead into their final-round showdown at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. Harrington shot a five-birdie, two-bogey 67 in the rain at Firestone Country Club in Ohio to lead the tournament at 10-under-par after six-time winner Woods fired a five-under 65 to move to seven-under and set up a compelling last pairing for Sunday&aposs final round. Tim Clark of South Africa and American Jerry Kelly lie a further two shots back on five-under in a tie for third. Ten players including all three 2009 major winners – Angel Cabrera, Lucas Glover and Stewart Cink – Spain&aposs Miguel Angel Jimenez, England&aposs Oliver Wilson and American Kenny Perry are tied for seventh on four-under. They are joined by Australian Robert Allenby, Americans Woody Austin and Zach Johnson and Canada&aposs Mike Weir, all of whom shot 69s. Geoff Ogilvy carded an impressive three-under 67 to move up to three-under overall. Nick O&aposHern remains at even-par, while Stuart Appleby (one-over) and Mathew Goggin (two-over) both broke par in their third rounds. Kiwi Danny Lee is at six-over after a disastrous 75. American JB Holmes moved to three-under with an early 65, while Ian Poulter bounced back from a 74 on Friday with a third-round 67 to reach two-under. Woods began the day five shots behind Harrington as he started his third round and was still four shots in arrears as he turned for home. Then Woods stepped up a gear on the back nine, four birdies in his last six holes moving into a tie for the lead with Harrington and Clark at seven-under-par as the American posted a five-under 65. US PGA champion Harrington had spent most of his third round sparring with Clark in the final group out on the 7,400-yard South Course as rain fell throughout the afternoon. The Dubliner began the day at seven-under, one shot clear of the South African, and quickly stretched his lead to two shots after pitching from 110 yards to inside 10 feet, from where he sank the birdie putt and moved to eight-under. Clark, though, birdied the second and third to draw level with the Irishman at eight-under. Jimenez and Perry shot 66s to finish their third rounds at four-under, which was looking a very good score as bogeys started to litter the cards of the players above him on the leaderboard. Harrington and Clark both bogeyed the par-four fourth to fall to seven-under before Clark birdied the par-three seventh to move into the outright lead at eight-under. The South African fell back into a share of the lead with a birdie at the ninth as they both made the turn at seven-under-par. Woods had begun steadily from two-under-par with four straight pars before a birdie at the par-three fifth was followed by bogey, birdie at the eighth and ninth. Then Woods came alive on the closing stretch, birdies at the 13th and 15th moving the six-time Firestone winner to five under, ominously close to the lead. Even more ominous was his iron shot from 91 yards to inside a foot at the 16th, a smiling Woods strolling up to tap in for another birdie that took him to six under, a shot off the lead. Jerry Kelly joined him there with his third birdie in four holes, at the 11th, but Woods was in the zone. His momentum carried him to a closing birdie at the 18th and he walked off the final green to a huge roar from the rain-soaked gallery with a score of 65 at seven under par, tied with Clark and Harrington in the lead. “I do feel comfortable here,” Woods said after his round. “As of right now, I&aposm tied for the lead but more than likely I&aposll probably be one or two back going into tomorrow.” “This golf course, you&aposve got to be very patient.” Woods&apos time at the top of the leaderboard was, as he predicted, short-lived as Harrington showed his mettle with back-to-back birdies, rolling in a 30-foot putt at the 12th and another of 21 feet at the 13th to pull two strokes clear. Clark missed a seven-foot par putt at the 14th to drop to six under as Harrington parred the hole and the Irishman showed he was not the sort to be intimidated by Woods when he birdied the par-three fourth to move to 10-under-par, three shots clear. Harrington had a wobble at the at the par-five 16th, which he bogeyed, but bounced straight back with a birdie at the par-four 17th to return to 10 under par. Clark had also bogeyed 16 to fall to five under, leaving the way clear for a Harrington-Woods showdown on Sunday. Meanwhile, John Rollins will take a four-shot lead into the final round at the Legends Reno-Tahoe Open in Nevada following a five-under-par 67 on Saturday. The American, who equalled the course record with a stunning round of 62 on Friday, moved to 17 under overall after carding five birdies and an eagle with bogeys at seven and eight his only dropped shots. Ryan Palmer lies second overnight, one shot ahead of fellow American Joe Ogilvie and two clear of Scotland&aposs Martin Laird after all three shot 66s at Montreux Golf & Country Club on Saturday. Marc Leishman is the leading Australian at seven-under, with James Nitties and Rod Pampling a shot behind. Third Round of the Bridgestone Invitational -10: Padraig Harrington 64 69 67 -7: Tiger Woods 68 70 65 -5: Jerry Kelly 71 65 69, Tim Clark 66 68 71 -4: Miguel Jimenez 68 72 66, Kenny Perry 69 71 66, Lucas Glover 69 69 68, Angel Cabrera 70 68 68, Stewart Cink 69 69 68, Oliver Wilson 69 69 68, Mike Weir 71 66 69, Robert Allenby (Australia) 68 69 69, Zach Johnson 67 70 69, Woody Austin 69 68 69 -3: JB Holmes 70 72 65, Geoff Ogilvy (Australia) 69 71 67, David Toms 69 69 69, Hunter Mahan 68 69 70, Steve Stricker 67 69 71 Also: E: Nick O Hern (Australia) 72 67 71 +1: Stuart Appleby (Australia) 74 68 69 +2: Matthew Goggin (Australia) 73 71 68 +6: Adam Scott (Australia) 78 67 71, Danny Lee (New Zealand) 68 73 75 +9: Nathan Green (Australia) 74 71 74