RORY MCILROY WILL tee off at 6.45pm on Sunday, at Kiawah Island in South Carolina, three shots clear of Sweden’s Carl Petterson.
The Northern Irish golfer was tied for the lead at the resumption of his storm-interrupted third round but pulled clear with some fine play on the back nine.
A dropped shot on the 13th was gained back after a fine iron approach and confident putt on 15.
McIlroy followed it up with a birdie on the par-five 16th and closed out his round with two pars. He said:
I thought it was just a continuation of how I played yesterday afternoon. I struck the ball beautifully from tee to green, same thing on Thursday, as well. Just one more round like that, and I’ll be happy.
Petterson carded a level-par 72 to sit as best of the rest. Three birdies were cancelled out by bogeys on five, 11 and 16 but he will be pleased with a three on the 17th that showed he is up for the championship challenge.
Bo Van Pelt, from America, is on -3 and will tee off with Petterson and McIlroy.
Adam Scott and Trevor Immelman, who both shot 70, are also on -3.
Graeme McDowell and Padraig Harrington are tied in 10th place and their rounds could have been so much better but for double bogeys.
Harrington’s two-shot drop came on the 10th while McDowell double-bogeyed the final hole. After signing for a round of 71, McDowell tweeted:
Tiger Woods and Vijay Singh, who started their rounds on -4 and tied for the lead, both shot 74 to drop back in a tie for sixth with Peter Hanson and Steve Stricker.
Darren Clarke shot a level par 72 to stay on +5.