World No. 8 Justin Thomas fired a 5-under-par 66 in yesterday’s third round of the World Golf Championships-Mexico Championship to post 12-under 201, good for a 1-shot lead over Dustin Johnson (66), and two clear of 36-hole leader Rory McIlroy (70) and Phil Mickelson (68). After opening in 69-66, the 23-year-old began in a three-way T2 on 7-under, two shy of McIlroy. Playing out of the penultimate threesome, he exchanged birdie-2 at two with bogey at the par-3 seventh to turn even. The Alabama product the 10th with a 21-footer, birdied the par-4 12th from 3’9″, and then jarred an ace at the 232-yard par-3 13th. A one bounce dunk…..Then just like getting a gutter ball after a strike, he chased that with bogey-5 at 14 before wrapping with back-to-back birdies at 15 and 16, both from eight feet and in. He’s looking for his fourth win this season in nine starts. He won the Aloha double, both as 54-hole leader, and came from four back with 8-under 64 to successfully defend at the CIMB Classic, winning by three. Overall, Thomas is 3-for-4 as 54-hole leader/co-leader.
World No. 1 Dustin Johnson shot a 5-under-par 66 in yesterdays third round of the World Golf Championships-Mexico Championship for a 54-hole tally of 11-under 202, up three places to solo 2nd. After opening with 70-66, the 32-year-old began in a three-way T7 on 6-under, three shy of 36-hole leader Rory McIlroy. Playing out of the third-to-last threesome, he opened with spectacular eagle-2 from 19’7″ at the drivable par-4 first, and dropped in a 17-footer for birdie at the par-4 second. The South Carolinian, who was in my town of Myrtle Beach for the Dustin Johnson Foundation Junior Event at TPC Myrtle Beach just 5 days ago, added birdie-4 at six, but not before saving par with a 35 foot bomb at the par-3 third. He birdied the par-3 13th and the par-5 15th and ended his scoring with 1-putt bogey-5 at 16 (from 13’10”), after his second got stuck up in a tree short of the green. ( it could only happen to him)
OK Folks…. Go Ahead….. you can say it….. I was wrong about Phil Mickelson……..I said in my earlier updates on Friday to bench Phil because he will fade due to the elevation changes in the Mexico City region…..My advise was after the first-round co-leader and World No. 23 played well in the first round to bench him in some leagues the rest of the way……Well he bobbed and weaved to a 3-under-par 68 yesterday for a 54-hole total of 10-under 203, down one place into a two-way T3, two shots off the lead of leader Justin Thomas, who shot 66. After opening in 67-68, he began in a three-way T2 on 7-under, two back of 36-hole leader Rory McIlroy. Playing out of the final threesome, he managed just four (of 14) fairways and eight greens in regulation, losing 3.610 strokes off-the-tee. He was hitting it all over Mexico City but in typical fashion, was able to escape with just three bogeys. He also had six birdies, two from off the green, and saved par with a third hole out at the par-4 14th (from 29 feet). He had three straight birdies on Nos. 15-17, but gave up a shot with a bogie at the 18th. With all that said I’m still keeping him on the bench today. His recent past show he hasn’t finished well…. my advise stands firm… bench him today.