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Golf: Theegala slips to 25th as Scheffler, Lowry lead at Palmer Invitational

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Golf: Theegala slips to 25th as Scheffler, Lowry lead at Palmer Invitational

Orlando (USA), March 10 (IANS) Sahith Theegala, the Indian-American golfer making waves on the PGA Tour, slipped down the leaderboard with a round of 75 and was lying tied 25th (T-25), as Scottie Scheffler and Shane Lowry shared the lead at the top at the Arnold Palmer Invitational here.

Asian star Hideki Matsuyama of Japan rallied late on Saturday with two birdies and a big par-save to stay in the title fight. Scheffler and Lowry concluded a tough third round by sharing the lead on 9-under. Matsuyama was T-4 as Wyndham Clark was third (71) at 8-under.

Matsuyama, who earned a record ninth PGA TOUR victory in his last start at the Genesis Invitational three weeks ago, fell out of a six-way overnight lead following a battling 72 which left him two shots back with one round remaining in the US$20 million Signature Event.

Scheffler one-putted his final seven holes, which included four birdies, as he signed for a 70 to co-lead with Lowry, the 2019 Open champion, who also carded a 70 as he seeks a third PGA TOUR title. Reigning U.S. Open champion Wyndham Clark carded a 71 for a solo third, one off the pace.

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The 32-year-old Japanese star found water with an errant drive on the third before dropping another shot at the next, a par-5, after missing the green. He pencilled his first birdie on the 13th hole before adding a third bogey on 15.

Then came his strong finish, a birdie from three feet on the 16th hole, an 11-foot birdie conversion at the next followed by a vital save after laying up from thick rough on the closing hole.

Scheffler, whose six PGA TOUR victories include the 2023 Players Championship and 2022 Masters, was rewarded for his perseverance as his putter finally hit a hot streak.

–IANS

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