27 Jun 2021 | Professional golf |
Aussies in bunch sprint at Travelers
by Martin Blake
Five Australians headed by Cameron Smith and Jason Day are within four shots of the lead entering the final day of the Travelers Championship on the US PGA Tour. Smith, the 27-year-old Queenslander who will represent Australia in the Olympic Games next month, bolted up the leaderboard with a third-round 66 that included six birdies. At nine under par overall, he is tied-third along with Day, who shot an even-par 70 today at TPC River Highlands. They are just a shot behind leaders Kramer Hickok and Bubba Watson at 10 under, with Day seeking his first tour win in three years. Smith missed the cut at the US Open but he has bounced back quickly, and today he promised to "give it a crack" heading down the stretch tomorrow. "I'm confident, probably the most confident I've been over the driver for a long time, which is a big thing for me," he said today. "I feel if I can get it in the fairway the rest of the game kind of takes care of itself. So that's really nice, to stand over the ball with driver and think you're going to hit a good one." As for Day, he continues to give the appearance of struggling with his back problems, and admitted that he is "stiff", but he downplayed the significance of it. The 33-year-old Australian said his absence from the US Open -- for the first time in 11 years -- had ratteld him. "I mean, it was nice to be at home with the birth of my son, you know, just spending quality time. Obviously I wanted to be there. It was killing me to watch the US Open sitting at home, I said that to my wife. I'm just trying to slowly work my way back to where I need to be. Right now I feel where I'm at world ranking-wise, I just needed to go and take some time off and just try and get my game back to where it should be." Matt Jones shot a 67 today to move up to tied-ninth at seven under par, while Lucas Herbert, who is trying to play his way to US Tour playing rights, and Marc Leishman are both at six under with sneaky chances tomorrow. ROOKIE pro Gabriela Ruffels continues to lead the Australian contingent at the KPMG Women's PGA Championship at Atlanta Athletic Club through three rounds. Ruffels is tied-17th at three under par after a 72 today.
GRACE Kim continues to shine on the Symetra Tour, sitting tied-seventh through three rounds of the Prasco Charity Championship in Ohio as she debuts on the secondary tour.
PERTH'S MIN WOO Lee had a good day at the BMW International on the European Tour, shooting 69 to put himself just outside the top 15.
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