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Pleased Henrik Stenson holds lead over Dustin Johnson at LIV Golf Invitational in New Jersey

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BEDMINSTER, N.J. — Henrik Stenson overcame a double bogey on his third gap Saturday with an extended eagle putt and sufficient birdies for a 2-under 69 at windy Trump Nationwide Bedminster and a 3-shot lead over Dustin Johnson within the LIV Golf Invitational.

Two weeks in the past, Stenson had simply missed the minimize within the British Open and was nonetheless the Ryder Cup captain for Europe. Now, the 46-year-old Swede is eighteen holes away from a $4 million prize, greater than double the most important verify of his profession.

It was a little bit of a grind at occasions, after which we sort of got here by with some actually good pictures and made some good putts, Stenson stated.

He was at 9-under 133, as solely 13 gamers from the 48-man subject remained beneath par.

Total, I am happy, and were on the races, Stenson stated.

Johnson has hit the ball persistently properly for 2 days at Trump Nationwide and bought sufficient putts to fall for a 69, leaving him three again and within the ultimate group with Stenson.

Talor Gooch had the perfect spherical by 3 pictures, a 64 that moved him right into a tie for third at 5 beneath together with Patrick Reed (73) and Carlos Ortiz (70).

Reed began the second of three rounds tied with Stenson and was protecting tempo till he started the again 9 with three straight bogeys. He rallied with an eagle late in his spherical to stay within the combine going into Sunday.

With quick greens, the wind made it more durable to attain. Solely 14 gamers shot par or higher.

Phil Mickelson was not on that listing once more. Mired in a hunch since a self-imposed four-month layoff, Mickelson may solely handle a 73 and was tied for fortieth, 15 pictures out of the lead.

Since his return, Mickelson has a 74.5 scoring common, together with the U.S. Open and British Open, together with his lone rating beneath par within the first LIV Golf occasion exterior London.

Stenson remains to be new to this 54-hole occasion with a shotgun begin, although good golf means he shall be beginning on the primary gap for the second straight time on Sunday, a level of normalcy for him. What hasnt been regular is being criticized for pledging his help to Europe in March in turning into Ryder Cup captain after which signing with the rival league 4 months later.

Europe has stripped him of is captaincy for the 2023 matches in Italy.

It is actually been a busy and emotional week, no query, or 10 days, Stenson stated. However I used to be very pleased with how I managed to channel the focus and exit and play the perfect spherical of the season yesterday. Like I stated, I did not have my finest stuff at this time, however I used to be nonetheless centered and good angle, and that is what stored me within the ballgame.

The Swede hasnt misplaced his dry humor. Requested if he had a chip on his shoulder, Stenson replied, I do not see any.

Johnson, who had been No. 1 on the earth longer than any participant since Tiger Woods, was the most important participant to signal with Saudi-backed LIV Golf two months in the past because it was about to launch.

His final victory was in early 2021 on the Saudi Worldwide. He hasnt received a PGA Tour-sanctioned match because the Masters in November 2020. He has completed eighth and fourth in his two LIV occasions, which was price $1.9 million.

Johnson wasnt conscious when he completed on No. 1 that Stenson had made bogey on the par-5 18th to finish his spherical, decreasing the Swedes margin to three pictures.

He is positively in attain for certain, particularly round this course, Johnson stated.

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