Paul Broadhurst faces a final day battle with two-time U.S. Open Champion Retief Goosen as he bids to defend the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship.
The Englishman, who won his second Senior Major title 12 months ago at Benton Harbor, Michigan, carded his second consecutive bogey-free round on the formidable East Course at Oak Hill, moving to six under par as he matched yesterday’s total of 67, three under par.
An eight-time winner on both sides of the Atlantic since turning 50 in 2015, this is the first time Broadhurst has held the 54-hole lead heading into the final day of a Senior Major Championship.
“I'm obviously delighted," said Broadhurst. "Another bogey-free round. It doesn't happen very often back to back, especially around a course like this. A lot of it is because I've played sensibly. I haven't necessarily gone at flags. Got a little bit fortunate on a couple of holes today. Made a couple of nice putts for par and managed another chip-in for birdie. Things were going for me front nine.
“I hit a lot of greens, a lot of fairways – I’m not spraying it. Trying to be as sensible as I can be. When I've hit a poor shot, I've played a good pitch. I think on scrambles I'm probably, I don't know, 12 from 14 or something like that. My short game's been pretty good out of the thick stuff. I've driven it reasonably well. My irons have been okay. They haven't been straight at the flag, but sometimes I've hit a way from the flag. But all in all, with a two shot lead, I couldn't be happier.
“Retief is a great player, he hits it miles. I'm going to have to be on my best game and more than likely have to shoot under par again. But you never know. It's such a touch golf course that level par tomorrow might be good enough, but I've just got to go out there, try and play exactly as I have played the last three days: sensibly.
Goosen, playing in his first season on the over-50s circuit after his milestone birthday in February, matched Broadhurst’s three under par 67 to move to four under par, two strokes off the pace.
The South African, who won the U.S. Open in 2001 and 2004 and topped the European Tour Order of Merit in 2001 and 2002, is one stroke ahead of America’s Ken Tanigawa.
“On a golf course like this, you're always going to have to be patient," said Goosen. "I felt pretty good out there, better than yesterday. I hit the ball probably a little better, too, which sort of takes a little bit of pressure off you, but I still hit a lot of wild shots out there.
“It's been a while since I've been in this sort of position when the butterflies are flying a little. It's been, what, 10 years ago when I last won a tournament. So it's something you have to get used to and try and calm yourself down and find a nice rhythm out there and play well.
“In a way it's great to get all the juices going. And it's almost like you got to try and back off a little bit and not hit the ball too hard. It's a good feeling, but it's also feeling you have to get used to and try and control; that you don't just lash at it.”
Scott McCarron, winner of the Constellation Senior PLAYERS Championship in 2017, is fourth on two under par, while 2010 US Ryder Cup Captain Corey Pavin and John Riegger share fifth on one under par.