Thanks to a hole-in-one at the par-3 13th and a round of 5-under 66, Justin Thomas will take a one-shot lead over Dustin Johnson into the final round of the WGC-Mexico Championship.
Here’s where things stand through 54 at Club de Golf Chapultepec, where Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy sit just two behind:
Leaderboard: Thomas (-12), Johnson (-11), McIlroy (-10), Mickelson (-10), Lee Westwood (-9), Jon Rahm (-9), Tommy Fleetwood (-8), Tyrrell Hatton (-8), Thomas Pieters (-8), Jordan Spieth (-7), Matt Kuchar (-7), J.B. Holmes (-7), Daniel Berger (-7)
What it means: Sunday in Mexico will boast a star-studded leaderboard and a battle of golf’s heavyweights. Thomas, who now has a 59 and an ace this season, is trying to trying to lock down his fourth victory by March 4, a month before the Masters. Johnson, the No. 1 player in the world, is trying to win in back-to-back starts. By doing so, he’d become only the second player to win four World Golf Championships, joining Tiger Woods, who has 18. Making his return from injury, McIlroy could actually supplant Johnson at the top of the world ranking with a victory Sunday should DJ finish worse than solo fourth. And finally, there’s the 46-year-old Mickelson, once again looking to win for the first time since claiming the 2013 Open Championship.
Round of the day: Jordan Spieth vaulted himself from 1 over to 7 under with a course-record 63. He improved his score at the first hole by five shots from Round 2 to Round 3, going from a triple bogey-7 to an eagle-2. He followed up with six birdies and 11 pars to jump 29 spots into a tie for 10th.
Best of the rest: There were lower rounds, but this has to go to Mickelson, who somehow authored a 68 while slapping it all over Chapultepec. His 3-under round featured six birdies, four fairways, three rules consultations, two hole-outs and one stolen ball.
Biggest disappointment: The third man in the final group with McIlroy and Mickelson, Ross Fisher dropped from T-2 to T-14 with a 1-over 72. The Englishman didn’t make a par for his first seven holes on the back nine, carding three birdies and four bogeys.
Quote of the day: “I know it looks bad. I’m just telling you it’s true.” – Mickelson, successfully lobbying for relief from a sprinkler in the woods, as (not) seen here:
Phil's somewhere in there… pic.twitter.com/ac99x7Qs3C
— Golf Channel (@GolfChannel) March 4, 2017