Henrik Stenson’s lead at Tour Championship stays intact
Stenson is four strokes clear of Dustin Johnson through three rounds at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta.
The New York Times
ATLANTA — The noted prankster Henrik Stenson pulled off one of his favorite escapades at a tour stop in Europe a few years ago when he found himself staying in the room next to fellow Swedes Carl Pettersson and Olle Karlsson. Tightening the strings on his hoodie until much of his face was hidden, Stenson hopped from his balcony to theirs, opened the sliding glass door, barged inside and shouted, “Give me your money!”
Stenson’s latest caper is even bolder. He is threatening to run away in broad daylight with more than $10million at the Tour Championship. At the start of a soggy third round Saturday at East Lake Golf Club, Stenson’s lead in the 30-man field was four strokes. After an opening nine of 4-under 31, his advantage was nine as the other players in his group, a flu-weakened Adam Scott and Jordan Spieth, fell hopelessly behind.
Playing the last hour in the worst of the day’s rain, Stenson bogeyed three of his last five holes for a 1-under 69 and a 54-hole score of 11-under 199. He was four shots ahead of Dustin Johnson, the last player to qualify for the tournament, who had a 67.
“I think I’ll choose to look at it from the bright side even though the weather is not that bright at the moment,” Stenson said. “Started the day with a four-shot lead and I still got it.”
After Johnson, the next closest golfer to Stenson was Steve Stricker, at 5 under after a 68.
Stenson is No. 2 in the FedEx Cup rankings behind Tiger Woods, which means he is one of five players who would earn a $10 million bonus with a victory here. Woods, Scott, Zach Johnson and Matt Kuchar are the others. Woods was 3 over after a 69; Kuchar was 2 over after a 69; and Zach Johnson was tied for fourth, at 4 under, after a 69.
Scott, the reigning Masters champion, required intravenous fluids after a fever-filled night and struggled to a 74, which left him at 2 under.
“It was pretty rough this morning,” he said, adding, “The club feels like it weighs 60 pounds.”
• Marcus Fraser shot a 4-under 68, giving the Australian a one-stroke lead over Italy’s Francesco Molinari, Belgium’s Nicolas Colsaerts and Sweden’s Joakim Lagergren after three rounds of the Italian Open in Turin.
• Vijay Singh shot a 6-under 66 to move into second place after the second round of the Pacific Links Hawaii Championship on the Champions Tour in Kapolei, Hawaii. Singh, playing his first event on the Champions Tour, moved within one shot of overnight leader Mark Wiebe, who had a 69 Saturday after opening with a 64. Singh carded a 69 in the first round. The three-time major champion and former world No. 1 had six birdies in his bogey-free second round.
• Rod Perry and Jeff Sorenson contributed birdies on their last four holes and the Americans took a 10½-5½ lead over Great Britain & Ireland in the PGA Cup in Hexham, England.