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Rory McIlroy two back of PGA leader Mitchell at Quail Hollow

Keith Mitchell, chasing his second career US PGA title, fired a five-under par 66 to seize a two-stroke lead over Rory McIlroy and Gary Woodland after Saturday's third round of the Wells Fargo Championship.

2021-05-09 10:26:00 AM

Keith Mitchell, chasing his second career USPGA title, fired a five-under par 66 to seize a two-stroke lead over McIlroyRory and Gary Woodland after the third round of the WellsFargoChampionship IOLsport

Keith Mitchell, chasing his second career US PGA title, fired a five-under par 66 to seize a two-stroke lead over Rory McIlroy and Gary Woodland after Saturday's third round of the Wells Fargo Championship.

"I really started hitting my driver better a couple weeks ago. I started standing a little taller," Mitchell said."This course sets up well for me. I really hit a lot of fades. I love the way it looks to my eye and right now it's clicking."

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McIlroy, who has not won since a November 2019 WGC event in Shanghai, has won twice at Quail Hollow, where he owns the course record of 61.The 32-year-old from Northern Ireland had five birdies but a double bogey at the par-4 12th denied him a share of the lead. He said he putted well on a day when that was not easy.

"It was really tough," McIlroy said."I felt where the holes were cut, they were tough to read. There were some tricky putts out there."McIlroy sank a 25-foot birdie putt at the par-4 third and rolled in another from just under 17 feet at the par-3 fourth. headtopics.com

"When I hole putts like that, it helps," McIlroy said.At the par-5 seventh, he blasted out of a bunker just inside seven feet and sank a birdie putt. McIlroy curled in his fourth birdie at the par-4 eighth, sinking a 21-foot birdie putt to seize the lead at 8-under.

ALSO READ: Tale of 2 birdies as JC Ritchie takes Cape Town Open in play-offMcIlroy reached the back nine with a two-stroke advantage, but his tee shot at the par-5 10th sailed way right beyond a cart path. He blasted into a bunker near the green and saved par with a four-foot putt.

Disaster struck on he par-4 12th when McIlroy went left into trees, pitched into the rough and later missed a six-foot bogey putt, falling two adrift.McIlroy salvaged par from eight feet at the par-3 13th, a fist pump showing how much the save meant, and punched out of the rough to seven feet at the par-5 15th and sank his birdie putt to reach 7-under.

List birdied three of the last four holes to shoot 68 while Kodaira had seven birdies and four bogeys in a roller-coaster round. Read more: IOL News »

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WATCH: Wells Fargo winner Rory McIlroy says injury scare nearly scuppered Quail Hollow bidFour-time major winner McIlroyRory celebrated his first victory in 18 months on Sunday, then revealed a neck injury nearly prevented him from teeing it up at QuailHollow IOLsport

McIlroy two back of leader Mitchell at Quail Hollow | The CitizenRory McIlroy is in contention at the Wells Fargo Championship and will go into the final round on Sunday just two strokes back of leader, Keith Mitchell.

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WATCH: Wells Fargo winner Rory McIlroy says injury scare nearly scuppered Quail Hollow bidFour-time major winner McIlroyRory celebrated his first victory in 18 months on Sunday, then revealed a neck injury nearly prevented him from teeing it up at QuailHollow IOLsport