Hideki Matsuyama shot a 2-under-par 68 for the second consecutive day on Saturday to maintain a one-stroke lead heading into the final round of the Zozo Championship in Chiba, Japan.
Matsuyama, who won the Masters in April, had a chance to extend his lead but was forced to take a drop on the par-5 No. 18 and finished with bogey in windy conditions at Narashino Country Club.
The 29-year-old Japan native, who is now 10-under 200 for the tournament, is bidding for his seventh PGA Tour victory and first on home soil.
Cameron Tringale, who started the day one shot behind Matsuyama, had fallen three strokes back on Saturday but birdied the final hole to stay one stroke back at 9-under.
“It was really tricky out there with the wind,” Tringale said. “So 2-under is a pretty good score. Just got to move on when you get a tough gust and I was able to do that, so pleased with the day.”
Tringale has finished runner-up three times in his career, but is still seeking his first victory in his 314th start.
Tringale is three strokes ahead of fellow American Brendan Steele (70), England’s Matt Wallace (70) and Colombia’s Sebastian Munoz (68), who are all tied for third. Munoz had a chance to separate himself from the trio, but missed a birdie putt on the final hole.
Wallace is seeking his first PGA Tour victory, Munoz is trying for his second and Steele is bidding for his fourth.
Steele finished with three birdies and three bogeys, citing the wind was a major factor.
“It was a grind for me, really hard, but I hung in there,” Steele said.
First-round leader Hiroshi Iwata of Japan shot 3-over 73 for the second consecutive round to fall into a five-way tie for 19th place at 1-under 209.
It was the first start for Iwata since 2017 after being added to the field as an alternate following the withdrawal of Kevin Na. Iwata missed the cut in eight of his past 10 PGA Tour events.
–Field Level Media