Johnson keeps Tiger honest
Tiger Woods maintained his two-shot lead at the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge, but Zach Johnson is ready to pounce if the world number one slips up in the final round.
Having carded a brilliant 10-under-par 62 in the second round to move to the top of the leaderboard in California, Woods survived a tough day at the office that saw him produce a level-par 72 in the third round for a total of 11-under-par 205.
With Johnson keeping up the pressure throughout the day, Woods needed birdies at two of the final three holes to keep give himself some space ahead of Sunday’s finale.
He birdied the par-five second hole, but with conditions causing havoc at Sherwood Country Club he dropped shots at four and eight before salvaging things late in the day.
“I’m pleased at having the lead – not real pleased with the way I putted today,” Woods said. “I left a few out there today.”
He added: “(Winning on Sunday) it would be special not just for myself but for the foundation and everyone who’s involved with us and what we’re trying to do.”
Johnson made sure he kept the pressure on Woods as he also finished the day with a level par, which was one shot better than the average score of 73.
“Zach’s not going anywhere,” Woods said. “He’s consistent, he’s tough and he’s proven that he can win major championships.”
Bubba Watson is another two shots off the pace after carding a two-over-par 74 while he is followed by Matt Kuchar at four under.
“This golf course is very difficult,” Watson said.
“Right now, there’s a pretty good player leading. He’s won here before. He knows this golf course pretty well. But I’m just going to come out there and play. I’ve shot under par my last few rounds. I want to keep doing that. If I can shoot in the 60s, give myself a chance, we’ll see what happens.”
World number six Rory McIlroy shot a four-under-par 68 that left him at 13 shots off the pace.
New Ryder Cup captain Luke Donald motivated by ‘bitter’ memories of 2021 defeat
Stenson was stripped of the role for breaking his contract by joining the Saudi-backed LIV Golf series.
The task facing Luke Donald after replacing Henrik Stenson
Stenson was appointed on March 15 and said he was fully committed to a role before signing with the Saudi-backed LIV Golf series.
Tony Finau claims second straight PGA Tour victory
The American won the 3M Open in his previous outing.
Henrik Stenson cushions Ryder Cup blow with £3.6m debut win in LIV Golf
The Swede was stripped of his role as Europe captain after joining the Saudi-backed breakaway tour.
Former Masters champion Bubba Watson becomes latest player to join LIV Golf
The left-hander is currently sidelined by a knee injury and is not expected to play until next season,
Luke Donald tipped to replace Henrik Stenson as Europe’s Ryder Cup captain
The Swede lost the job 127 days after his appointment following his decision to join the LIV Golf series.
Max Homa: Tiger Woods now understands the respect he commands from his peers
Homa has made no secret of his admiration for Woods.
Bernard Gallacher fears Greg Norman is not the man for compromise with LIV Golf
Players who have resigned from the PGA Tour to join LIV Golf will not be eligible for next year’s Ryder Cup.
Brooke Henderson takes two-shot lead into final round of Evian Championship
South Korea’s Ryu So-yeon climbed into outright second place on 15 under.