Saturday, 05 March 2016
WGC - Cadillac Championship - Day 3 Highlights

Rory McIlroy will take a three-shot lead into the final round of the World Golf Championships - Cadillac Championship as he attempts to make history at Trump National Doral.

A win for the Northern Irishman on Sunday would see European players hold all four of the WGC titles for the first time after his victory at the WGC - Cadillac Match Play, Shane Lowry's triumph in the WGC - Bridgestone Invitational and Russell Knox's win at the WGC - HSBC Champions.

To achieve that, however, McIlroy will have to hold off the challenge of defending champion Dustin Johnson and Australian Adam Scott.

McIlroy had four birdies in an unblemished 68 to move to 12 under, three clear of his nearest rivals, with Englishman Danny Willett and American duo Phil Mickelson and Bubba Watson at seven under.

The Spanish duo of Rafa Cabrera-Bello and Sergio Garcia were then both at five under after a pair of 67s, the low rounds of the day, alongside India's Anirban Lahiri.

McIlroy's round was his first competitive effort in the 2016 season without a bogey and, with his change in putting grip this week, he was delighted to see all parts of his game coming together.

To play the last 36 holes on a golf course like this with just one bogey on the card is really what I wanted to achieve this week. I feel really good about my game - Rory McIlroy

"My ball-striking, tee-to-green, my driving, that really hasn't been an issue this year. That's been where I wanted it to be. But my scrambling and my putting have needed work.

"To be able to correct that and go out and play in a final group on a Saturday in a golf tournament like this on a golf course like this, and play bogey-free, it gives me a lot of confidence going forward."

McIlroy had wiped out Scott's two-shot overnight advantage within four holes and an excellent approach and seven-foot putt at the fifth then moved him ahead on his own before the leading duo both made birdies on the par five eighth.

A beautiful 17-footer on the tenth brought a fourth birdie of the day and a bogey from Scott on the 13th extended the lead to three before the 2013 Masters Tournament winner picked the shot back up on the next.

Johnson birdied the first but gave the shot back on the fourth to turn in 36 before further gains on the 12th and 16th moved him alongside Scott at ten under.

The American was second on his own when Scott dropped a shot on the 17th but Johnson made a bogey on the last to hand McIlroy some breathing room.

Willett turned in 38 after a double-bogey on the third but four birdies on the back nine helped him to a level par 72, with Watson signing for a 71 and Mickelson going round in 70.

Cabrera-Bello was one over for the tournament before six birdies in ten holes from the seventh moved him up the leaderboard while Garcia had a single blemish on the 14th.

Lahiri signed for a 71 to sit a shot clear of two-time 2016 winner Charl Schwartzel and Americans Harris English, Rickie Fowler, Charley Hoffman and Smylie Kaufman.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1SCOTT, AdamAUS18-12
2WATSON, BubbaUSA18-11
T3WILLETT, DannyENG18-10
6WALKER, JimmyUSA18-8

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