St. Andrews, Scotland — Miguel Angel Jimenez shot par 72 in blustery conditions to remain 9-under overall and two shots clear heading to the final round of the Senior British Open on Saturday.
Tied for second were Tom Pernice (71) and Kirk Triplett (73) of the United States, defending champion Bernhard Langer (73) and Stephen Ames (74) of Canada.
A dozen others, including 68-year-old Tom Watson, were within four strokes of the leader.
Only 13 men broke par in the third round at St. Andrews in winds gusting up to 25 mph.
“We started with some flow and then we had a lot of ebb,” Triplett said.
Jimenez’s four birdies neatly cancelled out his four dropped shots. He made the unlikeliest of birdies at the long 14th when his blind approach from thick rough somehow bounced and rolled its way to no more than a foot from the cup. A neat up-and-down from the Road Hole bunker left of the 17th green kept things going. But a 10-foot putt for birdie on the final green slid past. It was, he felt, a day for patience.
“It would mean a lot to win The Senior Open, especially here at St. Andrews,” Jimenez said. “Seve (Ballesteros) was the first Spaniard to win The Open on this golf course, and it would be amazing if I could join the club with him.”
Watson won the British Open five times, but not at St. Andrews, and remains hopeful of annexing this seniors title for a record-breaking fourth time.
“It’s good to be in position,” he said.
Top-ranked Dustin Johnson used a fast start and a late eagle to grab a share of the lead in the RBC Canadian Open at Oakville, Ontario.
Johnson shot a 7-under 65 at Glen Abbey to match Kevin Tway, Byeong Hun An and Whee Kim at 17-under 199.
Johnson birdied the first three holes and five of the first six, then rebounded from two back-nine bogeys with a birdie-birdie-eagle run. He’s seeking his third victory of the season and 19th on the tour.
Tway, the second-round leader, had a 68. He’s trying to win his first PGA Tour title in the event where father Bob Tway won the last of his tour titles 15 years ago. An shot 66, and Kim 67.
Mackenzie Hughes was the top Canadian. He was tied for 13th at 11 under after a 67.
At Gullane, Scotland, Ariya Jutanugarn and Amy Yang led the Ladies Scottish Open by one stroke after an increasingly tough scoring day in the third round.
None of the top five broke par 71, as the wind picked up in the afternoon and grew to a howling 35 mph (55 kph) at Gullane.
Ariya and Yang carded 2-over rounds of 73 to be 8 under for the tournament.
Ariya bogeyed four holes before the Thai eagled the par-5 16th from 40 yards.
“I’m just really lucky,” Ariya said. “I wanted to make birdie.
“When the wind started to blow, I said, ‘Here is the Scottish Open, the real one.’ I had so much fun, I hit everywhere.”
Yang, on her 29th birthday, birdied her last hole to join Ariya at the top after three bogeys on the back nine.
Their closest challenger was Minjee Lee of Australia (71) at 7 under.
Bryson DeChambeau shared a one-shot lead with Richard McEvoy heading to the final round of the European Open at Hamburg, Germany.
Both golfers seek their first European Tour title.
DeChambeau started the third round ahead by a shot.
But McEvoy carded a 3-under 69 for the Englishman to lead the tournament at 12 under. DeChambeau had to birdie the last hole to tie him with a 70 at Green Eagle Golf Courses.
Right behind them were Masters champion Patrick Reed (69), and Austria’s Matthias Schwab (70).