Anirban Lahiri shoots 66 despite late double bogey
Anirban moves to Tied-40th.
Shanghai: Anirban Lahiri was relaxed and all smiles as he came back with a six-under 66 despite a late double bogey in the third round of the USD 8.5 million WGC-HSBC Champions here.
Lahiri, who had rounds of 70 and 75 on first two days and was languishing in 61st place moved to Tied-40th.
"I'm more relieved than anything else. I've been playing well but just haven't come up with a good score. I was slightly disappointed to have left a couple of shots out there coming in, but it was great round and I'm happy that it's come around today and I've got a chance to move up tomorrow," said Lahiri.
SSP Chawrasia, India's other representative at Asia's richest tournament, meanwhile posted a 71 for a 212 total.
"I'm playing well but I missed several short putts today which I hope will not happen again tomorrow," said Chawrasia, who was now Tied-43rd at four-under for 54 holes.
Lahiri's round was marred by a double bogey on par-5 eighth hole for the second day in a row. He hit his third shot into the water from the fairway again. This time he played a shot from the hazard, but it went over the green and then missed his up and down from there. But he did make up with a birdie on the ninth with a 15-foot putt on his closing hole.
The seven-time Asian Tour winner, who teed off at the back-nine 10, stormed towards the turn with five birdies for an outward 31.
He started marking his card with more birdies again on holes six and seven before a double-bogey seven on eight halted his charge momentarily.
While feeling disappointed with carding a double-bogey on the same hole for two consecutive days, Lahiri showed great character by bouncing back quickly with another birdie on nine to sign for a three-day total of five-under-par 211.
"I haven't made too many doubles in the last two or three months and to do it on a par-five from the fairway on each occasion is ironic. It just shows how easy it is to mess up from a good situation," said Lahiri.
Meanwhile, Kevin Kisner continued his march towards a maiden WGC-HSBC Champions title, but the American has a whole host of rivals including his compatriot Dustin Johnson and local hero Li Hao-tong snapping at his heels at Sheshan International Golf Club.
Kisner posted four birdies in a round of 70 to move to 16 under par, one shot clear of Johnson, Li and Scotland's Russell Knox, who still has one hole left to play after darkness cut short his third round in Shanghai.
The threat of lightning had led to a lengthy suspension in the morning, and when play got underway Li was soon creating a storm of his own, notching four successive birdies from the first to eat into Kisner's overnight advantage.
The 20 year old, who came agonisingly close to winning the Shenzhen International earlier in the season, eventually signed for a round of 66 and a 15 under par aggregate total.
Li will have a place in the record books in his sights on the final day, as he bids to become the youngest player and the first from China to win a World Golf Championship event.
Johnson represents a big threat to the youngster s hopes of creating history after the World Number Eight joined Li and Knox in a share of second place courtesy of a round of 65.
The lowest round of the day was posted by two-time Major Champion Jordan Spieth, who signed for a flawless 63 to move firmly into contention on 13 under par. The World No. 2 was joined in a share of fifth place by England s Ross Fisher and his fellow European Tour Member Patrick Reed of America.
Kisner said, "I played well today. The weather was difficult, but I hung in there and made some birdies coming in to give myself a chance to be leading going into tomorrow. My theory on the Tour and trying to win is your lead is never safe because some guy is going to make birdies. Look at Jordan today, his name popped up, I don't even know where he started and he was on the leaderboard."
Spieth added, "Today I came out knowing that it was a gettable golf course. We had a rain delay after the first two holes, I was at even par and those first two were playing pretty easy, so I was pretty frustrated with that and came out and just got it going from there. Once one or two putts went in, a few more did.
"I missed four putts inside eight feet today and that's also not normal in a round of golf. So what could have been and what it was, both are special and obviously I'm pleased."