Storm Cancels Third Round of PGA Championship


A powerful storm packing wind and heavy rains swept along the South Carolina coast to cause the postponement of the PGA Championship's third round. The $8 million event, golf's final major of the year, is being played on the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island alongside the Atlantic Ocean.

Play was halted at 4:50 p.m. Saturday. Tournament officials hoped to restart the championship, but the stubborn storm prevented that from happening. Players will return at 7:45 a.m. (EDT) Sunday morning to where their balls were marked prior to exiting the course and complete their third rounds. Once the third round is completed, the final round will commence at 11:45 a.m. with threesomes going off both the first and 10th tees.

Sunday's forecast calls for temperatures in the high-80s, with a 20 percent chance of rain and light winds.

The clubhouse leaders are Rory McIlroy and Vijay Singh at 6-under. McIlroy roared up the leaderboard off five birdies and a bogey for a 4-under 32 on the front nine. The 23-year-old Northern Irishman will resume play on the 10th hole. Singh, who shared the 36-hole lead Tiger Woods and Carl Pettersson at 4-under, had two birdies through seven holes and will re-start his third round on the eighth.

"I don't mind playing 27 tomorrow," said McIlroy, who recovered from a weird incident on the third hole when his ball stayed stuck in a dead cypress tree. He took an unplayable lie, hit his third shot to 10 feet and made the putt for par. "I'll play 27, 36, 18, whatever - you take what they give you and you go on," added the 2011 U.S. Open champion.

One stroke back is Adam Scott, who had four birdies on his front nine despite the blustery conditions. The Aussie made the turn in 4-under 32 and will begin on the 10th.

Pettersson had a birdie and a bogey through eight holes to stay at 4-under, while Woods carded three bogeys through seven. He's now at 1-under.

Bo Van Pelt completed his round, a sparkling 5-under 67, to get to 3-under 213 through 54 holes. Also at that number - but only through 10 holes - is former Masters' champion Trevor Immelman of South Africa.

Van Pelt was happy to be among the lucky ones to finish their third rounds. "You never know what the weather will be like when they go back out," said the 37-year-old before the announcement was made that the third round was canceled. "So they might get the good end of it or the bad end of it. To me, just glad to get done, to just be putting there on the last green. So it's nice to just be done for the day and get to go home and relax."

Steve Stricker also shot 67 and is among four players at 2-under; none of the others - Peter Hanson (12 holes), Graeme McDowell (11) and Ian Poulter (eight) - were able to complete their rounds.

Stricker's score got the Wisconsinite into the hunt for his elusive first major title. "It kind of gets me back in it," said the 45-year-old. "It all depends on what happens this afternoon. The wind may be kicking up a little bit more, making it a little bit more difficult for them. But it all depends what those leaders do. If one of those leaders goes out and shoots a 5-under round, bang, I'm seven back again. It all depends what they do will determine how far I'm back, obviously. I'm going to have to have another good one or better one tomorrow."

Seven players are tied with Woods at 1-under, but only three - Jimmy Walker (67), David Lynn (68) and Padraig Harrington (69) - completed their rounds. The others are Joost Luiten (through 12 holes), Tim Clark (11), Aaron Baddeley (nine) and Jamie Donaldson (nine).

Harrington had five birdies and a double-bogey on the par-4 10th hole Saturday. "It was a good round overall," said the three-time major champion from Ireland. "There were some highs, and made a very bad double-bogey on 10, but I got it going right on the last couple holes. So I finished it off solid, that kind of makes up for it. I think through 16 holes I felt like I'd left a number of shots out there, but to hole a bunker shot on 17 and then to get up and down from 35 yards on the last, yeah, I've got to be comfortable. That's the score I sort of deserved today.

"It depends on the leaders. This weather could change everything. The guys could come back out after this and it could be flat calm and they could make some numbers. I would have rather it just stayed the way it was, the same conditions as we played. Who knows what's going to happen now.

"Obviously I'm 1 under par, what's it, 6 under leading now? Six under is not too far away, but if there's a lot of guys up there at 6 under or if there's a few more, it's too much for me to do tomorrow maybe. But to hang in there and - if 4 under is in the last couple of groups, it means 1 under still has a chance."

Defending champion and the winner in last week's WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, Keegan Bradley, had three birdies and three bogeys through 16 holes and is at a cumulative 1-over when play resumes Sunday morning. Also at that mark is Phil Mickelson, who was 1-over par through 11.

Other scores included a 70 by Geoff Ogilvy that took the Aussie to even-par 216, and Jason Dufner posted a 4-under 68 to reach 2-over 218 along with Justin Rose (70), Bubba Watson (70) and Greg Chalmers (72).

Reigning British Open champion Ernie Els carded a 73 to reach 4-over 220, while Scott Piercy, who won last week's Reno-Tahoe Open, shot his second straight 78 to go to 8-over 224.

For complete scoring, visit http://www.pga.com/pgachampionship/scoring/leaderboard.


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