AAP Golf

Johnson eyes PGA Championship redemption

By AAP Newswire

A decade after controversially being denied a play-off place in the US PGA Championship, Dustin Johnson has his sights on a redemptive victory and second major title.

Johnson fired eight birdies in a third round five-under 65 at Harding Park to finish the day at nine-under par, holding a one-shot lead over fellow Americans Cameron Champ and Scottie Scheffler.

Defending champion Brooks Koepka, who is seeking a third-straight victory in the event, is two shots off the pace alongside Collin Morikawa and England's Paul Casey.

Australian Jason Day, Justin Rose, Tommy Fleetwood and Bryson DeChambeau are part of a six-strong group at six under.

The top 17 names on the leaderboard are separated by just four shots in what promises to be a thrilling conclusion to the first major championship in 13 months.

"I've been in contention a lot and I've got it done a lot of times," Johnson, who finished second behind Koepka last year, said.

"Tomorrow, it's no different. I'm going to have to play good golf if I want to win.

"Just take what the golf course gives me and just keep on going because it doesn't really matter what other guys are doing.

"All I can control is myself."

Controlling himself in the final round of majors has been a problem for Johnson before, most notably when he took a three-shot lead into the final round of the US Open at Pebble Beach in 2010 but collapsed to a closing 82.

Two months later, Johnson held a one-shot lead with one to play in the 2010 US PGA at Whistling Straits, but bogeyed the final hole and was then assessed a two-shot penalty for grounding his club in a bunker on the 72nd hole.

Johnson admitted grounding his club, but said he did not know that the sandy waste area from which he played his second shot was deemed to be a bunker.

In 2015, the US Open slipped out of Johnson's grasp once more when he three-putted from 12 feet on the 72nd hole to finish a shot behind Jordan Spieth.

He finally broke his major duck in the same tournament the following year at Oakmont, despite a penalty for causing his ball to move on the fifth green in the final round.

Koepka's hopes of victory were fading fast when he followed a brilliant birdie on the 12th with three straight bogeys, but the four-time major winner rallied to birdie two of his last three holes.