Smith had ne'er changeable amended than 62 — doubly this twelvemonth connected the PGA Tour, erstwhile astatine his location nine successful Brisbane, Australia — erstwhile helium stood implicit a 12-foot putt connected the 18th spread astatine Liberty National for a accidental astatine the 13th sub-60 circular connected the PGA Tour.
He missed and had to settee for the people grounds astatine 11-under 60, and figured that would astatine slightest support him successful scope of the world's No. 1 player.
"Jon is playing immoderate beauteous bully astatine the minute, truthful we've got to effort to drawback up," Smith said.
Thanks to Rahm, helium did.
The U.S. Open champion ran disconnected 4 birdies successful a six-hole agelong astir the crook to regain the pb and had bully scoring chances up of him. But helium doubly deed into the h2o connected the 2nd and third-easiest holes, dropped a combined 3 shots and had to rally for a 67.
They were astatine 16-under 197 and present get a time disconnected due to the fact that of Hurricane Henri. The PGA Tour looked astatine the path, and determination was capable rainfall and unsafe upwind connected the edges of the tempest that they decided to adjacent Liberty National connected Sunday. The last circular volition beryllium Monday.
With adjacent a anticipation of much rainfall and nary much golf, Rahm wanted the 54-hole lead. At worst, helium was determined not to autumn behind.
"I didn't privation to permission it up to chance," helium said.
Rahm didn't find excessively overmuch incorrect with his game. He thought his 4-iron into the par-5 13th was flush and started walking forward, waiting for the shot to deed the green. He noticed his caddie wasn't moving.
"It was a small higher than I expected it and seems similar the upwind mightiness person picked up a small bit," Rahm said. "It looked similar astir this abbreviated from covering, truthful it's 1 of those things that hap successful golf."
He took a punishment drop, pulled his adjacent changeable into heavy writer connected a slope and made treble bogey.
Rahm was conscionable to the near of the reachable par-4 16th successful what helium thought was a brushed lie. The thought was to springiness himself a accidental astatine birdie and marque par astatine worst. But it came retired hot, rolled crossed the greenish and into the h2o and led to bogey.
Rahm and Smith were 1 changeable up of Erik van Rooyen of South Africa, who made 10 birdies for a 62, 1 of 4 rounds astatine 62 oregon lower.
Justin Thomas (67) and Tony Finau (68) were 3 shots behind. Shane Lowry and Corey Conners each changeable 62 and remained successful the mix.
The mean people successful the 3rd circular was 68.3
Smith teed disconnected immoderate 3 hours earlier the leaders and opened with 5 birdies successful six holes, 1 of respective bully starts. The Australian, however, kept it going. He picked up his eighth birdie connected the 13th, came wrong a ft of a hole-in-one connected the 14th and started reasoning 59.
Smith narrowly missed an eagle putt connected the 16th, deed a wedge stiff connected the 17th to scope 11 nether for the circular and was 1 birdie distant from the 13th sub-60 circular connected the PGA Tour. His attack to the 18th settled 12 feet to the close of the flag.
"Just didn't bash it," Smith said.
Rahm had a superb par prevention beyond the 14th green, deed it adjacent for a abbreviated birdie connected the 15th to regain a stock of the lead. And aft his bogey connected the 16th, helium responded with different birdie connected the 17th hole.
And now, a time of remainder across. That's not the worst script for Smith, knowing it's pugnacious to instrumentality the time aft a grounds people and effort to lucifer it. It's not the worst for those staying crossed the Hudson River successful Manhattan.
"There are worst cities to beryllium stuck in," Lowry said. "I'm definite I'll find thing to do."
Besides, Rahm said speaks from acquisition connected having constricted enactment with obscurity to go.
"If COVID quarantine has taught america anything, it's what to bash the full time cooped up successful a room," helium said.
Thomas was among respective players making a determination that got stopped successful their tracks. He started the backmost 9 with 3 birdies successful 4 holes, lone to spell agelong of the par-3 14th into a hazard and made treble bogey. Even so, he's precise overmuch successful the mix.
Harold Varner III made his blunder astatine the worst time. A mediocre thrust connected the 18th was followed by a blocked attack implicit the partition and into the hazard. He made triple bogey, had to settee for a 68 and went signifier 1 changeable disconnected the pb to a necktie for ninth, 4 shots behind.
Varner is inactive successful bully signifier to beryllium among the apical 70 successful the FedEx Cup who beforehand to adjacent week. More unit is connected Tom Hoge (No. 108) and Keith Mitchell (No. 101), who person to decorativeness determination astir the apical 10 to support their seasons going.
Hoge changeable 67 and was tied for sixth with Lowry and Viktor Hovland (65), 3 shots behind. Mitchell took triple bogey with a atrocious thrust connected the 10th. He was tied for 11th, 5 behind.
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