Taylor Pendrith takes three-shot lead into final day of Butterfield Bermuda Championship
Taylor Pendrith holds a three-stroke lead heading into the final round of the Butterfield Bermuda Championship at Port Royal Golf Course.
Having fired a record-breaking ten-under 61 to lead by one lead after the second round, the 30-year-old, while not as spectacular, was just as consistent, as he managed to extend his advantage by a further two shots thanks to a six-under 65.
In a round that consisted of seven birdies — his first arriving at the 7th, igniting a run of four on the trot — nine pars and a solitary bogey, the Canadian has a maiden PGA Tour victory well within his own grasp heading into the final day.
“It’s always difficult to follow up a low score with another low score but I’m hitting it really nicely,” said Pendrith, who is hoping his experience in the adverse conditions across the opening round, in which he shot a respectable 70, will stand him in good stead, with rain in the forecast for tomorrow.
“I stayed patient today and I hit some really nice shots.”
He added: “I had to be patient to get on a bit of a run but I managed to make four in a row and really jump-start my round.
“I’ve been driving really well and my putter has been hot, so it was a case of sticking to a process, hoping a run would come at some point. It was a little tough mentally earlier in the day to stick with it.
“I haven’t checked the forecast just yet but it is nice to have that few shots lead. However, anything can happen because it could be crazy out there again and so it may be about just making pars. Hopefully I can hit some solid shots and have a good round.”
Despite his encouraging advantage, Pendrith will be well aware of the threat posed by his rivals, none more so right now than Danny Lee, who matched the leader’s efforts to fire himself into contention with a brilliant 65.
Having come into the round on eight under, after back-to-back rounds of 67, the 31-year-old reached the turn at 12 under before consecutive birdies gave him a share of the lead.
A par and two bogeys followed on his next three holes to halt his charge slightly, but he regained composure, remaining bogey-free for the rest of his round, which included the final two of his eight birdies on the 15th and 17th, to keep himself in with a real chance of a second PGA Tour victory.
“It was another good round today,” the New Zealander said. “I started off really smoothly and I think I played very well overall.
“All I know is I’ve got to keep my head down and just keep doing what I’ve been doing over the week.
“I haven’t had this kind of week in a while, and it feels great. It’s good to be back in contention, making a lot of good shots and birdies out there. It’s been fun.”
Also carding 65 was Lucas Herbert, with the Australian matching his efforts of the previous day to finish a further shot off the lead.
Having got off to a steady start across the front nine, it was not until a run of three successive birdies that his round came to life, starting on the 9th. From there, he remained bogey-free, adding a further two birdies and five pars to finish on 13 under.
Others in contention are Patrick Rodgers and Vincent Whaley, who find themselves tied for fourth on 12 under, while Justin Lower and Peter Malnati are a further shot back.
With bad weather in the air, there will be a two-tee start in the final round with a view to finishing play by 2.45pm.
7.45: Adam Hadwin, Bae Sang Moon, Austin Eckroat.
7.56: Thomas Detry, Brett Drewitt, Séamus Power
8.07: Alex Smalley, Johnson Wagner, Russell Knox.
8.18: Mark Hubbard, Guido Migliozzi, Davis Riley.
8.29: Brandon Wu, Matt Fitzpatrick, Luke Donald.
8.40: Ben Kohles, Brian Gay, Mito Pereira.
8.51: Stephan Jäger, J.J. Spaun, Patrick Reed.
9.02: David Skinns, Jonathan Byrd, Greyson Sigg.
9.13: Adam Svensson, Peter Uihlein, Chad Ramey.
9.24: Garrick Higgo, Dylan Wu, Graeme McDowell.
9.35: Peter Malnati, Curtis Thompson, Patrick Flavin.
9.46: Patrick Rodgers, Vincent Whaley, Justin Lower.
9.57: Taylor Pendrith, Danny Lee, Lucas Herbert.
7.45: Scott Gutschewski, Dylan Frittelli, Chase Seiffert.
7.56: Noh Seung Yul, Scott Brown, Christiaan Bezuidenhout.
8.07: Kramer Hickok, D.A. Points, Matthias Schwab.
8.18: Ludvig Aberg, Scott Stallings, David Hearn.
8.29: Ben Crane, Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Sean O'Hair.
8.40: Brandon Hagy, Jim Knous, Camilo Villegas.
8.51: David Lingmerth, Seth Reeves, Aaron Rai.
9.02: Denny McCarthy, Robert Garrigus, Max McGreevy.
9.13: Lee Hodges, Kurt Kitayama, Sepp Straka.
9.24: Kyle Wilshire, Sahith Theegala, Nick Watney.
9.35: Ben Martin, Ryan Armour, John Senden.
9.46: Hayden Buckley, John Merrick, Arjun Atwal.