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Pettersson takes lead in PGA

Sweden's Carl Pettersson nabbed six birdies in a six-under par 64 Saturday to seize a one-stroke lead after the third round of the five million-dollar US PGA Fry's Elecronics Open.

Pettersson stood on 13-under par 197 after 54 holes with Canada’s Mike Weir and Australian Mark Hensby one stroke off the pace. Weir fired a 65 on Saturday while Hensby shot 66.

Hensby, currently 151st on the money list and battling to get into the top 125 and keep his playing privileges for next year, relinquished a share of the lead with a disappointing double-bogey at 18.

Aussie Jarrod Lyle was on 200 after a 64 of his own Saturday, tied with overnight leader Ryan Moore.

Japan’s Daisuke Maruyama and Americans Justin Leonard and Ben Crane were tied on 201.

Pettersson, who is gunning for his first title since he won The Memorial in 2006, also has the 2005 Chrysler Championship title on his resume.

But his best finish this year was fifth place, which he has accomplished three times.

Petterson, who started the day four strokes behind Moore, made a move early with three birdies in his first five holes.

“I only missed two greens and didn’t give myself any real opportunities to make bogeys,” said the player who is based in North Carolina. “I played steady, and I putted pretty good, too.”

Billy Mayfair started the day five shots adrift and picked up five birdies in his first 10 holes to forge a tie for the lead, but the American fell back with bogeys on four of his last six holes.

Mayfair finished with a 68 for 202, five shots off the lead. Meanwhile Moore, still seeking his first win as a pro after a stellar amateur career, endured an erratic round.

He countered three bogeys with two birdies through seven holes, then dropped a shot at two of his last three holes en route to a 71.

GOLF

Sweden’s Noren storms to French Open title as fellow Swede Kinhult falters

Sweden's Alex Noren came back from a seven-shot overnight deficit to claim a dramatic French Open victory at Le Golf National on Sunday, as the difficult closing stretch of the Ryder Cup course saw a host of challengers slip up.

Sweden's Noren storms to French Open title as fellow Swede Kinhult falters
Swedish golfer Alex Noren holds the trophy after winning the HNA Open de France, as part of the European Tour 2018, on Sunday. Photo: LUCAS BARIOULET / AFP
Fellow Swede Marcus Kinhult had entered Sunday's play with a two-shot lead but struggled through a five-over final round to end in a three-way tie for fifth.
 
World number 16 Noren fired a brilliant four-under 67 to reach seven-under par for the tournament, before sitting back and watching his rivals falter as he won by a single stroke.
 
The 35-year-old will be a key figure for Europe when the Ryder Cup gets underway on September 28, and he showed all his qualities by playing the last three holes in two-under.
 
The big-name pairing of Sergio Garcia and Jon Rahm both threatened, but the two Spaniards found water at the 18th, while world number two Justin Thomas never seriously contended.
 
Julian Suri, who was looking to become the first American winner of the event since Barry Jaeckel in 1972, went to the 72nd hole on eight-under but made a watery double-bogey, while England's Chris Wood also blew a late lead.
 
That handed Noren, who finished his fourth round 45 minutes before the final group, a 10th European Tour title and first since the BMW PGA Championship in May 2017, when he also fought back from seven shots behind on the final day.
 
Scotland's Russell Knox carded a final-round 65 earlier in the day to finish tied for second with Suri and Wood on six-under — enough to secure him a spot for the British Open at Carnoustie along with Kinhult and Suri.