European Ryder Cup Winning Duo Stenson & Rahm Seeking To Deny Finau Hero Title

Albany, Bahamas ….

Three players – Sweden’s Henrik Stenson, Spain’s Jon Rahm and American Tony Finau – are tied for the lead on 13-under par heading to the final round of the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas.

Stenson and Rahm, who shared the second-round lead, could not be separated at the close of day three in signing for three-under par 69s while Finau birdied both the 15th and 16th holes in a round of 67 to join his European Ryder Cup winning rivals.

“I played nicely birding four of the par-5s, and on this golf course, we have five of them,” said Finau who is making his debut in the $US 3m event on the Albany Club course.

“That’s what you have to do to play well, so I was able to do that today.

“This is a golf course I’m not very familiar with, I played it once before we played. When I’m playing well, I feel like I can score on any golf course, especially a course that has five par 5s. You’ve got that one extra hole. We play a lot of golf courses on the PGA Tour there’s only two or three, so to be able to have those couple extra par 5s, you just know you’re going to have some opportunities to score and I’ve been able to take advantage of those opportunities on those par 5s”.

In fact, over the three rounds Finau is nine-under for the combined 15 par-5s.

And the 29-year old Salt Lake City golfer was also praising a move to carry out a small adjustment to his putter as he seeks to make amends after losing out in a play-off in last month’s WGC – HSBC Champions event.

“I added two degrees of loft in my putter after Thursday and then went out and shot 64 yesterday with it and so I decided to keep it,” he said smiling.

Stenson was four-under par over the outward nine holes but played the inward half in one-over par as he seeks a first victory anywhere since capturing the 2017 Wyndham Championship.

“It’s a three-way tie for the lead so it’s very much an open ballgame,” said Stenson.

“It’s a small-field tournament, but it still gives you a nice boost if you manage to win at the end of the day.”

Fellow Swede Alex Noren was celebrating after recording a hole-in-one at the par-3 17th hole and in what was a remarkable finish for the Ryder Cup star.

Noren was two-over par after 10 holes and then after a birdie on 12 he completed his closing five holes in bizarre manner – birdie (14), eagle (15), triple-bogey (16), ace (17th) and birdie (18) in a score of 70 for an eight-under par tally.

And tournament host, Tiger Woods will look to end his full-season return to golf on a positive note after posting a third round 72 to slip to last and 18th place at two-under par.

“I just haven’t played clean this week,” said Woods.

“Today was probably the best I’ve felt physically this week, finally started to get my energy back and started to feel a little bit better.”

Immediately following the event, Woods is flying by private jet to Los Angeles to board a QANTAS flight direct to Melbourne where he will arrive Tuesday morning local time.

Woods’ three-day visit to Melbourne is part of his preparations as the USA Presidents Team Captain ahead of the staging of the biennial event last next year.

“We’ll go out there and look at the golf course and we’ll look at the set-up and drive around it and see the administrative side of it and where we’ll have the team facility,” he said.

“I’m trying to remember is basically from when we played it last time and trying to understand all about the transportation and logistical side of the event.”



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