ANCASTER, Ontario – Rory McIlroy added the Canadian Open to his schedule as a tune-up for next week's U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. Now he has a chance to add another national championship to his already impressive tally.
The Northern Irishman shot a bogey-free 6-under 64 on Saturday to move into a share of the lead after three rounds at Hamilton Golf and Country Club.
“I think the best preparation for tournaments ahead is to get yourself into contention and feel the heat of battle, and going down the stretch hitting the shots when you need to,” McIlroy said.
“If you can do that then I don't think there is anything else in the game that will give you more confidence than that.”
Seeking his second victory of the season, McIlroy surged into a tie with Webb Simpson (67) and Matt Kuchar (69) at 13-under 197. McIlroy's round was tied for best on the day with Jonathan Byrd, who was tied for ninth at 8 under. Kuchar, who also shared the second-round lead, has a shot at his career-best third victory of the season.
Adam Hadwin, seeking to become the first Canadian winner of the event since 1954, was one shot back after a 67. Shane Lowry (66) and Brandt Snedeker (69) were also 12 under.
McIlroy won The Players Championship in March but has not seriously contended since.
A victory would be his fifth in a national open, following the U.S. Open (2011), Australian Open (2013), British Open (2014) and Irish Open (2016). McIroy also counts the Hong Kong Open (2011) as part of his national-championship tally.
LPGA: In Galloway, N.J., Jeongeun Lee6 made a 4-foot eagle putt on the 18th hole to grab a one-stroke lead after two rounds of the ShopRite LPGA Classic.
Lee6 shot a 2-under 69 and completed 36 holes over the Bay Course at Seaview at 10-under 132. She will enter Sunday's final round for the $262,500 first-prize check seeking to become only the fifth player in LPGA history to win the Women's Open and the following tournament in back-to-back weeks.
Louise Suggs (1952), Jane Geddes (1986), Se Ri Pak (1998) and Meg Mallon (2004) are the others to have accomplished the feat.
Mariah Stackhouse, who contended at this event last year and finished in a tie for seventh, shot a 67 and held second place with a 133 total in her quest to become the first African-American woman to win an LPGA Tour event.
EUROPEAN: In Cascais, Portugal, Thailand won a nearest-the-pin playoff against England to lift the trophy at the GolfSixes event on the European Tour.
Phachara Khongwatmai hit a shot to inside six feet to clinch victory with Thongchai Jaidee over English pair Tom Lewis and Paul Waring.
Thailand had beaten defending champion Ireland on Day 1 of the modified greensomes event as Jaidee made a hole-in-one on the final hole in the group stages.
On Saturday, Khongwatmai and Jaidee had a 3-1 win over Scotland in the quarterfinals and a 1-0 victory against Spain in the semifinals.