Saturday, 26 November 2011
K T Kim   (Getty Images)
K T Kim (Getty Images)

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South Korean K T Kim fired a third round 67 to take a one shot lead over American Bubba Watson at the Australian PGA Championship at Coolum.

Kim's third consecutive round in the 60s saw him finish the day 13 under par, one ahead of Watson who carded a 69.

Australian Aaron Baddeley lies third on ten under with his countrymen David Bransdon and Marcus Fraser, as well as 2009 US PGA champion Y E Yang of South Korea, a shot further back on nine under par.

Kim led the field alongside overnight leader Fraser and Watson midway through the front nine but proved the more consistent as the others fell away.

Fresh from impressing for the International team at last week's Presidents Cup at Royal Melbourne, the World Number 24 enjoyed a flawless round as he matched Friday's score.

However, despite having now gone 27 holes without a bogey, Kim still only leads by one from Watson after three days, the latter recovering from a double bogey at the 15th with a birdie at the 17th.

Watson issued an immediate challenge to overnight leader Fraser when they began their rounds just before midday, jumping into a share of the lead when he eagled the par five first for the second day running.

Within two holes, Fraser's cushion was back to two as Watson made a bogey and Fraser followed with a birdie, but a dropped shot by the Victorian and birdie for Watson at the fourth saw them level again. 

The pair then both birdied the fifth to pull clear of Kim on 12 under.

Robert Allenby's five birdies in his first dozen holes saw him join Fraser and Watson but a sixth birdie at the 16th was his only joy coming home after he bogeyed the 13th, double bogeyed the 15th and dropped shots on his final two holes as he carded a 71.

Fraser made a double bogey at the 12th and then bogeyed the 14th as he fell four shots off the lead Watson had opened up with another birdie at 12th.

Kim, meanwhile, continued to show his liking for the course as he seeks to overhaul current OneAsia money list leader Andre Stolz in the tour's final event, following up three consecutive birdies from the third with two more at the 12th and 15th.

And he very nearly holed a long birdie putt at the last that would have doubled his lead, having no trouble knocking in the testing par putt coming back to stay ahead of Watson.

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