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Dublin: 20 °C Saturday 30 May, 2020

McIlroy hits the front at the Irish Open as play suspended for the second time

The world number three leads on nine-under par.

McIlroy currently has a two-shot lead.
McIlroy currently has a two-shot lead.
Image: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Updated at 19.30pm

RORY MCILROY HAS seized the lead at the Irish Open on a weather-interrupted day at the K Club.

The third round was halted for over two hours this afternoon due to a threat of thunderstorms and is set to resume at 7.55pm after another stoppage.

In the forty-five minute period between the breaks, McIlroy managed to extend his advantage at the top of the leaderboard to three shots after waiting to hole for birdie on the 10th.

The tournament host, who is aiming to end his hoodoo on home soil and win his first Irish Open title, has taken full advantage of slow starts from overnight co-leaders Danny Willett and Marc Warren.

The Irish Open - Day Three - The K Club It's been another miserable afternoon at the K Club. Source: PA Wire/Press Association Images

Masters champion Willett dropped three shots before the turn and although he repaired some of the damage with a birdie on four, now finds himself playing catch-up.

Warren has struggled with the difficult conditions and has capitulated with five bogeys on his front nine to drop back to five-over par.

McIlroy started with three pars before a driver, 8 iron combination set-up a tap in birdie on the par five fourth. From there, he carded five further pars to turn with a 34.

McIlroy apart, it hasn’t been a good day for the rest of the Irish challengers with Kevin Phelan, Gary Hurley, Graeme McDowell, Gavin Moynihan, Paul Dunne and Paul McGinley all well over-par.

Shane Lowry, however, missed the worst part of the weather and recorded a solid one-under par round of 71 to sit in a tie for 34th.

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Ryan Bailey

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