Kiawah Island, SC (Sports Network) - Rory McIlroy will take a 3-shot lead into
Sunday's final round of the PGA Championship.
He finished off a 5-under 67 on Sunday morning after heavy storms hammered the
Ocean Course at Kiawah Island and forced the suspension of play on Saturday.
McIlroy has quite a bit on the line Sunday afternoon.
A win would make him the youngest player in golf history to win two major
championship. McIlroy would eclipse, by four months, the record of someone
named Tiger Woods.
A win on Sunday would propel McIlroy back to No. 1 in the world rankings,
provided Luke Donald doesn't finish second. Donald will have to go by roughly
55 players and make up something like 14 strokes, so that's not going to
The weather is once again expected to be like Thursday when 44 players broke
par. McIlroy will have to keep his foot on the gas if he wants to hoist the
Too many good players could put a 66 or 67 on the board Sunday afternoon and
make things interesting. Names like Woods, Vijay Singh, Adam Scott, Steve
Stricker, Ian Poulter, Graeme McDowell and even Phil Mickelson and defending
champion Keegan Bradley lurk within striking distance.
McIlroy did a great job of taking advantage of Kiawah's scoring holes in round
three. He went 3-under through the first five. Someone will fly out of the
gate on Sunday and make a charge, but if McIlroy can get to six at 1-under, he
should be OK.
With that in mind, here's how recent PGA Championships have been won.
FIVE DOWN WITH THREE TO PLAY (2011)
Keegan Bradley erased a 5-shot deficit with three holes to play to force a
playoff with Jason Dufner.
The two headed to a 3-hole playoff at Atlanta Athletic Club and Bradley made a
4-foot birdie putt at the first extra hole. Dufner 3-putted the second hole
for a bogey and Bradley was two clear on the last playoff hole.
Dufner made a 20-foot birdie putt to make things interesting, but Bradley
calmly 2-putted for par and the 1-shot victory and the Wanamaker Trophy.
"I can't believe this thing is sitting next to me," Bradley said.
Bradley became the third player in golf history to win in his major
championship debut. Francis Ouimet won the 1913 U.S. Open in his first major
appearance and Ben Curtis did the same at the 2003 British Open.
WAS IT A BUNKER OR NOT? (2010)
Martin Kaymer became the first German to win the PGA Championship in a 3-
hole playoff over Bubba Watson, but the story of the tournament surrounded
Dustin Johnson, who was denied a trip into the extra session after grounding
his club in a bunker on the 72nd hole.
Johnson had a 1-shot lead with one hole to play in regulation, but a bogey
apparently sent him toward a playoff. Afterward, it was ruled that one of his
shots was in a small bunker, unbeknownst to Johnson. He was assessed a 2-shot
penalty for his grounding of the club and finished in a share of fifth.
"Never once did it cross my mind it was a sand trap," Johnson said at the
The 3-hole playoff began with Watson's birdie at the 10th to take a 1-shot
lead, but Kaymer responded with a 12-foot birdie putt at the 17th to tie it
with one hole to play.
The pair returned to the 18th, where both players teed off into the rough.
Watson appeared to have the better lie and tried to go for the flag, but it
didn't work and his ball landed in a stream well short of the green.
Kaymer elected to pitch out with his second after his opponent's watery
mistake. He hit his third 15 feet right of the hole.
After Watson took his penalty drop, he knocked his fourth over the green into
a bunker. He blasted out and his ball hit the flagstick, but rolled three feet
Kaymer needed two putts for the win and he ran his par putt about two feet
past the cup. Watson kicked in his short double-bogey putt and Kaymer studied
his little winning putt.
Kaymer tapped in for the bogey and the win.
"It feels great," Kaymer said. "I get goose bumps just talking about it. It's
TIGER FINALLY TOPPLED (2009)
The 2009 PGA Championship had presumably ended after Saturday's third round.
Tiger Woods held a two-shot lead after 54 holes, and never surrendered such an
advantage in a major tournament throughout his career. In 14 previous
occurrences, Woods went on to capture whatever title he was chasing.
Not this time.
Y.E. Yang battled Woods all day, taking advantage of the top player's poor
putting to claim his first major championship.
The two were tied at 6-under par when they reached the drivable, par-4 14th.
Woods drove into a bunker and Yang came up just short of the putting surface.
Woods blasted out to seven feet, but Yang chipped in for an eagle to move in
front by himself.
Woods rolled in his birdie effort and trailed by a stroke.
The difference remained heading to the 18th, and both drove into the fairway
at the par-4 final hole. Yang hit a 3-hybrid that was headed directly at the
hole. When it stopped, Yang had eight feet for birdie.
The pressure was on Woods and he pulled his second into the left rough. He
needed to chip-in to have any chance to force a playoff, but his shot from the
tall grass rolled past the hole some 10 feet.
Yang ran home his birdie putt and the 37-year-old from Seoul raised his arms
and screamed in excitement. In the early hours of Monday morning, his Korean
fans watched their countryman make history.
A WIN FOR EUROPE (2008)
No European had won the season's last major since 1930, but Padraig Harrington
ended the drought for an entire continent by erasing a 3-shot final round
deficit to win his second consecutive major championship.
It was more heartbreak for another European, Sergio Garcia, who has yet to
finish a major atop the leaderboard.
Garcia held the lead on the back nine, but Harrington, who had beaten Garcia
in a playoff at the 2007 British Open, made several crucial putts down the
stretch to overtake him, including a 12-foot par save on the 18th to win it.
Harrington vaulted into a share of the lead with birdies at the 10th, 12th and
13th, but bogeyed the 14th to give the lead back to Garcia and American third-
round leader Ben Curtis.
Harrington saved par at the 16th, while Garcia and Curtis both fell backwards
with bogeys to create a 3-way tie with two holes to play.
At the par-3 17th, Harrington hit his tee shot to seven feet, while Garcia
landed closer. After Harrington stepped up and drained the birdie effort,
Garcia's old nemesis resurfaced, missing from five feet away.
Harrington walked to 18 with a 1-shot lead over Garcia, while Curtis had
bogeyed the 17th to take himself out of contention.
Harrington drove into a bunker and hit a terrible layup into the rough at the
difficult closing hole at Oakland Hills.
Garcia drove into the rough and hit his second into a greenside bunker.
Harrington, easily becoming one of the toughest closers in golf, knocked a
7-iron to 12 feet for his third.
Garcia blasted out to 10 feet and if Harrington missed his par putt, Garcia
would need that 10-footer to force a playoff.
Harrington never gave him a chance.
TIGER GOES BACK-TO-BACK, AGAIN (2007)
Tiger Woods improved to 13-0 with a 54-hole lead at major championships,
closing with a 1-under 69 to win his fourth PGA Championship by two strokes
over Woody Austin.
Woods led by as many as five strokes on the final day, but a bogey at the 14th
saw his advantage trimmed to one after Austin's third consecutive birdie at
The master of closers, however, responded with a birdie on the 15th and parred
the remaining three holes to win the title.
It was Woods' fifth title of the year and 59th overall, as the world's best
player continued his domination of golf. It was his 10th top-5 finish in the
last 12 majors contested.
ANOTHER WIN FOR TIGER AT MEDINAH (2006)
With his second PGA Championship victory at Medinah Country Club, Tiger Woods
captured his 12th major, moving him into second all time on golf's most
At age 30, the question was more of "When?" than "If?" whether or not Woods
would surpass Jack Nicklaus' 18 major titles.
Woods, at 18-under 270, matched his own PGA Championship record for lowest
score in relation to par, which he originally set in 2000 along with Bob May.
He became the only player to win a PGA Championship on the same course twice
after winning there in 1999 as well. It was his second straight year with two
major titles and third time in five years.
For the top player in the world, it was simply another bushel of records to
WIRE-TO-WIRE FOR PHIL (2005)
Even Tiger Woods knew that Phil Mickelson would go on to victory.
Rain forced play into Monday for the first time since 1986, with Woods as the
clubhouse leader, but Mickelson has the leader with four holes to play.
Instead of remaining in New Jersey to see the outcome, Woods traveled back to
Florida on Sunday night and was heavily criticized.
It proved to be the right decision, however, as Mickelson got up-and-down from
50 feet away for a closing 2-foot birdie to win by one stroke over Thomas
Bjorn and Steve Elkington. Woods finished tied for fourth, two strokes back.
After ending an 0-for-46 drought in majors at the 2004 Masters, Mickelson
needed only seven more tries for his second title.
Mickelson became the seventh wire-to-wire winner at the PGA Championship and
the first since Woods in 2000.
The Sports Network