Graeme McDowell took control of the all-Irish clash with Shane Lowry as the third round of the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship began in Tucson.
After a 45-minute frost delay this morning – the tournament was already behind schedule after Wednesday’s freak snowstorm and were hoping to cram the third round and quarter-final in on Saturday – the former US Open Champion lost the second to a birdie from Rory McIlroy’s conqueror.
However, pars were good enough for The Ryder Cup star to take the next two and birdies at the fifth, seventh and ninth gave McDowell a healthy four up advantage with seven to play.
McDowell’s Medinah team-mate Ian Poulter was also going well. The Englishman reached three up through 11 holes against South African Tim Clark.
However, the other Europeans were finding it tough going.
Nicolas Colsaerts was three down against American Matt Kuchar, Gonzalo Fernandez-Castaño was losing by the same margin against Webb Simpson while Martin Kaymer was in all sorts of trouble at five down against defending champion Hunter Mahan.