With rounds of 64-69-67=200 (-10), Padraig Harrington currently holds a three-stroke lead over Tiger Woods after the third round of the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational.
Harrington recorded his lowest three-round total in a PGA TOUR- or European Tour-sanctioned event since the 2007 TOUR Championship when he was at 200 (-10) after 54 holes; he eventually finished T11 after a final-round 73 (+3). This is actually tied for the third-lowest 54-hole total for Harrington in a PGA TOUR-sanctioned event.
Year Tournament 54-hole total Finish
2001 Buick Open 199 (-17) T6
2007 THE TOUR Champ. 200 (-10) T11
2007 Nissan Open 201 (-12) 7
Between the PGA TOUR and the European Tour, Harrington is 8-for-20 when leading after three rounds.
The last 54-hole lead Harrington held was at the Irish Open on the European Tour in May 2007. He shot 71 on Sunday and won after a playoff with Bradley Dredge. He has been the 54-hole leader on the European Tour a total of 18 times, winning seven of those.
On the PGA TOUR, Harrington has held only two 54-hole leads – at the 2003 PLAYERS Championship (T1 with Jay Haas; shot 72 on Sunday and finished T2 behind Davis Love III) and the 2005 Barclays Classic (T1 with Jim Furyk; shot 70 on Sunday and won).
He has never gone wire-to-wire to win a PGA TOUR-sanctioned event.
The third-round leader/co-leader has gone on to win 19 of 32 stroke-play events on the PGA TOUR this season. The third-round/co-leader has gone on to win the Bridgestone Invitational seven out of 10 times.
Harrington is making his 11th start at the Bridgestone Invitational, with three top-20 finishes. His best result came in his first start in 1999, finishing T12.
Harrington, a three-time major championship winner, has just three top-25 finishes on TOUR in 2009, with a season-best T11 at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. He is currently No. 142 on the FedExCup points list.
A win tomorrow – worth 550 points – would give him 830 points and move him into the mid-30s in the rankings (Angel Cabrera is currently No. 32 with 834 points).
Tiger Woods shot a third-round-low (tied with J.B. Holmes) 65 (-5) today to move to second through 54 holes at the Bridgestone Invitational, three strokes off the lead at 203 (-7). Woods continues his streak of being within the top 5 after 54 holes here at the Bridgestone Invitational (see chart below).
When you combine the CA Championship and Bridgestone Invitational – the two stroke-play World Golf Championships Woods has participated in over the past 11 years – he has been out of the top 10 after 54 holes only once, at the 2009 CA Championship when he was T19 after three rounds and eventually finished T9.
Tiger Woods thru 54 holes at the Bridgestone Invitational
Year Thru 54 holes Finish
2007 2 (one shot back to R. Sabbatini) 1
2006 T2 (one shot back to S. Cink) 1
2005 T1 (with K. Perry) 1
2004 T2 (five shots back to S. Cink) T2
2003 T4 (three shots back to D. Clarke) T4
2002 T4 (two shots back to R. Allenby) 4
2001 T2 (two shots back to J. Furyk) 1
2000 1 (9-shot lead) 1
1999 1 (5-shot lead) 1
The three come-from-behind wins at the Bridgestone Invitational have all been authored by Woods. He was two strokes down to Jim Furyk in 2001 (shot 69 on Sunday and won in a playoff); one stroke down to Stewart Cink in 2006 (shot 68 on Sunday and won in a playoff); and one stroke down to Rory Sabbatini in 2007 (shot 65 on Sunday and won by eight).
He has come from behind three times at the Buick Invitational also (2005, 2006, 2007). A come-from-behind win tomorrow would make this Woods’ fourth at the Bridgestone Invitational – and most in his career at the same event.
Woods has come-from-behind 19 times (of 66 stroke-play wins) in his career. Five of those 19 wins have been by three shots or more (his deficit heading into Sunday’s round), including two this season.