US rookie Champ fires 64 to grab four-shot US PGA lead

US rookie Champ fires 64 to grab four-shot US PGA lead

LOS ANGELES,. American rookie Cameron Champ, seeking his first US PGA title, fired an eight-under par 64 to seize a four-stroke lead after yesterday’s third round of the Sanderson Farms Championship.

The 23-year-old Californian stood on 17-under 199 after 54 holes at the Country Club of Jackson in Mississippi with Canada’s Corey Conners second after his own 64.

“I enjoy it. It’s nice,” Champ said of the lead. “Still got one more to go. Looking forward to getting after it tomorrow. I’m going to be aggressive.”

Champ led after 18 holes and shared a second-round advantage with Chinese-American Norman Xiong, who stumbled to a 76 Saturday to fall off the leaderboard.

Champ opened with a 10-foot birdie putt, then ran off three birdies in a row respectively at the par-5 third, par-3 fourth and par-5 fifth.

After answering his lone bogey at six with a six-foot birdie putt to close the front nine, Champ birdied the par-5 11th and ran off another three birdies in a row starting at the par-3 13th.

“On the range I had a good session and I came out and executed all the shots I have,” Champ said. “And then I made the putts on top of it.”

Conners also had nine birdies against a lone bogey to stand second with Americans Shawn Stefani and D.J. Trahan another stroke adrift and Scotland’s Martin Laird sharing fifth alongside American Sam Burns.

Laird’s six-under 66 concluded with a 26-foot birdie putt.

“I putted really nicely,” said the Scotsman. “I had a couple 15-foot par putts and bogey free is always nice.

“You want to get off to a good start to the (season) when you have your little break. Hopefully I can keep this going and be in a really nice place before Christmas.” — AFP