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A superb 65 from Pádraig Harrington sees him storm up the US PGA leaderboard

It was a round of five birdies and no bogies for Harrington.

Harrington won the title back in 2008.
Harrington won the title back in 2008.
Image: PA Wire/Press Association Images

IRELAND’S PÁDRAIG HARRINGTON has put himself firmly in contention at the US PGA, with a joint-low round of the day at the Baltusrol Golf Club in New Jersey.

Harrington, who is the sole Irish representative to make the weekend, started the round in 61st place, but the Dubliner carded a five-under par round of 65, to leave the Olympic-bound golfer on four-under and in joint 10th position.

The 44-year-old is five shots behind joint-leaders Jimmy Walker and Robert Streb, at the time of writing.

Thunderstorms halted Saturday’s third round before the leaders could tee off, but not before early results sparked talk of a Major record-low 62 at rain-softened Baltusrol.

Streb, who matched the all-time major record low Friday with a seven-under par 63, and fellow American Walker shared the lead on nine-under with top-ranked defending champion Jason Day of Australia and Argentina’s Emiliano Grillo.

Leaders

Five-time major winner Phil Mickelson predicted the all-time major low-round record of 63, achieved 30 times by 28 different golfers, will fall this weekend at Baltusrol.

“I think somebody is going to break that major record of 63,” Mickelson said after firing a third-round 68. “I really think someone is going to shoot 62 or 61 over the weekend. It’s out there.”

American Kevin Kisner birdied three of the last four holes for a 65 to grab the clubhouse lead and share sixth overall at five-under 205 with 37 of 86 players able to finish before the storm.

“Keep it in the fairway, you can attack,” Kisner said. “The course is receptive enough. You can make a lot of birdies. It was a solid day and glad to get up there in the mix.”

He doubted 63 would fall due to rising winds but admitted, “Somebody gets hot, you never know.”

And the 72-hole major record of 20-under par — set by Day at last year’s PGA and matched two weeks ago by Sweden’s Henrik Stenson to win his first major title at the British Open — could be in danger as well.

“Well, 20-under won the last major. I think you better attack it every time you get a chance,” Kisner said. “I’m pretty sure I can’t get to 20. Hopefully I can get to 10- or 11- and have a shot tomorrow.”

PGA Championship Golf Source: Mike Groll

Stenson was fifth on 134 with Germany’s Kaymer, the 2010 PGA Championship and 2014 US Open winner, another stroke back with Americans Brooks Koepka, Patrick Reed and Kisner.

Baltusrol has surrendered four major 63s, the most of any course, and the PGA has given up 14 63s in all, as many as the US and British Opens combined.

In addition to Streb’s Friday feat, Thomas Bjorn shot 63 at Baltusrol in the third round of the 2005 PGA and Jack Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf each opened on 63 at Baltusrol in the 1980 US Open.

The results of early finishers on Saturday who were par or worse after 36 holes seemed to support Mickelson’s prediction.

American Patton Kizzire birdied five of the last six holes to shoot 68. South Africa’s Charl Schwartzel, the 2011 Masters champion, birdied four in a row to begin the back nine on his way to a 66.

© AFP, 2016

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