Horikawa leads, Koepka five strokes off the pace in Japan
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[November 17, 2018]
TOKYO, Nov 17 (Reuters) - World
number one Brooks Koepka has his work cut out if he is to win the
Dunlop Phoenix Tournament for a third year in a row after falling
five strokes behind leader Mikumu Horikawa during the third round in
Miyazaki on Saturday.
Japan's Horikawa will take a two-shot lead into the final round at
Phoenix Country Club after firing seven birdies with a single bogey
in a six-under-par 65 to move to 12-under 201 for the tournament
after 54 holes.
Australian Brendan Jones and Japan's Shugo Imahira also shot 65s for
a share of second on 10-under with South Korean Park Sang-hyun alone
in fourth a further shot back after shooting a 68 for the third day
in a row.
Koepka started the day three shots off the pace after landing three
late birdies on Friday and looked to have ignited his round when he
nailed an eagle putt at his fourth hole, a par five.
The American stalled when he gave back the shots with a double bogey
at the next hole, however, and two more birdies over the back nine
left him with a 69 to stand in a share of eighth on seven-under.
"It was pretty bad," Koepka told reporters. "I didn't hit very good,
didn't putt very good. It's kind of continuation of last two days. I
haven't got any momentum. I played poorly.
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"I need to play better. If I can put a good round together, I should
have myself in contention with nine holes to go. That's the plan."
Overnight leader Emiliano Grillo managed only a level par 71 and
fell to a tie for fifth on eight-under with Yuki Inamori (70) and
another South Korean Japan Golf Tour regular in Ryu Hyun-woo (68).
The Argentine world number 48 was equally unimpressed with his
"Absolutely garbage to be honest," he said. "Didn't hit it good off
the tee, didnít hit good second shot, putting was horrible. A lot of
work to do tomorrow." (Reporting by Nick Mulvenney in Sydney,
editing by Amlan Chakraborty)
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