Masters 2016: Rory McIlroy targets Green Jacket after Jordan Spieth slip
Last updated on .From the section Golf
|Masters third-round leaderboard (US unless stated)|
|-3 J Spieth; -2 S Kaufman; -1 B Langer (Ger), H Matsuyama (Jpn); Level J Day (Aus), D Johnson, D Willett (Eng)|
|Selected others: +1 L Westwood (Eng), B Snedeker, S Kjeldsen (Den); +2 R McIlroy (NI); +3 J Rose (Eng);+4 C Wood (Eng), P Casey (Eng)|
Rory McIlroy says he still has a chance to win the Masters after defending champion Jordan Spieth's late stumble threw the tournament wide open.
Spieth dropped three shots on the last two holes to finish on three under par, just a shot ahead of compatriot Smylie Kaufman, with McIlroy on two over.
"I think it's winnable from here. If Jordan hadn't had that finish then I would probably say no," said McIlroy.
"But the guys on two and three over like myself feel we have a chance now."
Relive Saturday's third round at Augusta
McIlroy, who failed to record a single birdie for the first time in 81 major championship rounds, shot 77 in testing conditions at Augusta.
The Northern Irishman, bidding to become only the sixth man to secure a career Grand Slam of golf's four majors, tees off at 18:55 BST on Sunday alongside American Daniel Berger.
"I just have to make sure that I get off to a fast start, put some red numbers on the board and make a bit of noise to put a bit of pressure on the guys playing behind me," he said.
"I'm only five back and I can't believe I am standing here saying that because I was eight behind standing on the 17th tee. I need to regroup and stay positive and go out and attack."
Willett and Westwood seek to take chances
England's Danny Willett carded a third-round 72 to finish level par - three behind Spieth - while Westwood shot a 71 and is one over.
"You're going to have to do something special," said Willett.
"The golf course has firmed up day by day so hopefully if the wind does die on Sunday, we can still keep the control of the ball flight and hopefully roll a few in."
Westwood, who was never outside the top 10 at Augusta from 2010 to 2014, looked out of contention after a front nine of 39, but stormed back in 32 with four birdies.
He was one of only five players to break par in the strong winds.
"It's possible to shoot four or five under on the back nine, so it's a case of not losing your patience and not being too aggressive when you don't need to be, and then taking the chances when they present themselves," he said.
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Spieth scrambled from poor play with solid putting...but he'll find those 4 to 7 footers much more difficult under final day pressure.
As for McIlroy, he needs to learn course management, his shot selection was laughable.
Even the greatest players need help with decision making. Rory could also use help reading greens. Change caddy Rory!
Some sympathy for Rory though as I think his head just went after about 8 holes where JS had played awfully off the tee and had got very very lucky on occasions.
Old head on young shoulders, hard to believe he's only 22 isn't it
feel sorry for you being so bitter towards a young man making a fantastic living doing something he loves, good luck to him
"If it is the case there is a ruling to disallow the score if he benefits."
There have been more than a few instances of this at U.S. courses down the years when the local lad fires wide. The one ruling that was heartbreaking was the chap who marked his ball on the green, studied the line, then replaced the ball, only to have a wind gust blow it into the water for a penalty.
When I see Justin Rose or Dustin Johnson I don't care where their mothers gave birth. I want to see those in contention not a player 10 shots back just because he is British.
Do you really get some jingoistic thrill out of this?