Rickie Fowler shot a bogey-free 5-under-par 65 on “Moving Day” at The Honda Classic to post 13-under 197, good for four-shot lead over Tyrrell Hatton and six clear of five players who share third. After opening in twin 66s, he began round 3 in solo 3rd, one back of 36-hole co-leaders Ryan Palmer and Wesley Bryan. He striped 10 (of 14) fairways and hit 11 greens in regulation….. His five birdies came at Nos. 3, 7, 9, 16 and 18, posting 1.727 putts per GIR and 1.637 SG: Two of his conversions dropped from between 10 and 12 feet, adding a long one from 32’6″ for birdie-2 at 7. Fowler is chasing his fourth TOUR title in 179 career events (174 pro), first since the 2015 Deutsche Bank win 29 starts ago. All three of his previous wins have been in come-from-behind fashion. He’s 0-for-4 in his career as 54-hole leader, including two missteps last season (Wells Fargo, The Barclays)…. Forget those stats…. its a different years and I fully expect Rickie to hold on for the win today…. leave him on your team in some formats with confidence.
I mentioned this sponsors invite and World No. 18 Tyrrell Hatton on my live facebook update on Thursday morning. Pick him with confidence all year long……he shot a 4-under-par 66 yesterday to reach 9-under 201, up five on the leaderboard to solo 2nd. The 25-year-old is a one-time winner on the European Tour in 91 career events, claiming the 2016 Alfred Dunhill Links Championship back in Oct. He’s followed that with seven straight top 25s worldwide, four of those top 10s, including runner-up at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship, finishing a career-high 4th in the Race to Dubai rankings. This is the Englishman’s 12th career PGA TOUR start, with a best of T5 at last year’s Open Championship. He began R3 in a four-way T7 on 5-under, four shy of 36-hole co-leaders Ryan Palmer and Wesley Bryan. Hatton had bogeys at 6 and 17, but also had six birdies, including three straight at 12-14. He had just 27 total putts, but just 1.538 putts per GIR, currently pacing the field in the latter…. Keep an eye on this stat moving further into the Fantasy Golf Season folks…. it will certainly earn you some points throughout the year.
Overnight co-leader and World No. 88 Ryan Palmer labored to a 3-over-par 73 on moving day and moved the wrong way dropping seven places into a 12-way T8 on 6-under 204. The other co-leader PGA TOUR rookie Wesley Bryan back-pedaled as well to 2-over-par 72 in yesterdays third round for a 54-hole total of 7-under 203, down two spots into a five-way T3, six back of leader Rickie Fowler. How does the old and new holf up today remains to be seen but it should be a great finish.