PGA Tour: Tom Kim sets up mouth-watering showdown with Cantlay at Shriners Children’s Open
- Tom Kim and Patrick Cantlay share the lead entering the final round of the Shriners Children’s Open
- With a win Sunday, Kim would become the first player since Tiger Woods to win twice on the PGA TOUR before turning 21
The stage is set for another mouth-watering showdown between Korean phenom Tom Kim and world No 4 Patrick Cantlay as they take their Presidents Cup rivalry into the Shriners Children’s Open finale.
Kim fired a solid 9-under 62 at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas on a low-scoring Saturday to tie Cantlay, who missed a birdie putt on his last for a magical 59, as they ended the third round on 19-under 194 in the PGA Tour event.
Matthew NeSmith (63) and overnight leader Mito Pereira (67) are three back in tied third place on 197, while defending champion Sungjae Im and rookie S.H. Kim carded rounds of 63 and 64 respectively and will enter the final day four behind.
With a win Sunday, the 20-year-old Kim would become the first player since Tiger Woods to win twice on the PGA Tour before turning 21, but Cantlay, winner of the Shriners Children’s Open in 2017, stands in his way.
“I’ve played really solid. I took care of what I needed to take care of on this golf course and just needed a good round to give myself a chance on Sunday,” Kim said.
After not making a single birdie on the back nine in the third round, Kim caught fire on his homeward stretch on Saturday with six birdies, including a tap-in birdie on the last to tie Cantlay. Kim is also bogey-free through 54 holes.
Cantlay had five birdies in his opening six holes, and then poured it on again down the stretch with five birdies in a six-hole stretch that put him on the cusp of his first sub-60 round.
Twelve months ago, Im came from three shots back to win the Shriners Children’s Open and he will need a similar comeback if he is to bag a third career win in the US following a superb 63 on Saturday.
He was joined by compatriot S.H. Kim on 15-under, with the latter shooting a fine 64 for a shot at a maiden PGA TOUR win.
“I know it’s really difficult to win back-to-back, but I’ve got one more day,” said Im. “Today, I didn’t think about winning. I just played with my mind being clear.”
Si Woo Kim, the top points earner for the International Team at Quail Hollow with three wins, shot a 67 to lie five shots off the pace, ensuring a strong Korean presence on the leader board in Vegas which is poised for a day of drama on Sunday.