Rory McIlroy continues his march to first major

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Updated: June 19, 2011

Rory McIlroy is just one day away from winning his first major as his third day at the Congressional in the US Open has left him eight shots clear of Y.E. Yang in second place, with a score of 14-under for the championship.

The young Northern Irishman followed up his outstanding opening two days, which saw him card a 65 and 66 respectively, by shooting a 68 and retaining his place at the top of the leaderboard.

McIlroy is in groundbreaking form; having set the record for lowest score after 36 holes at the US Open, his third round in Bethesda has seen him set a new record for lowest score after 54 holes and has also made him the first ever player to reach 14-under at this tournament after previously breaking the 13-under mark.

After his sensational opening two days, a cool head was needed to be displayed by the Ulsterman and that’s exactly what he did, shooting just one bogey when he hit the bunker on the 10th but he followed it up on what is regarded the most difficult hole on the course, the 11th, which he made look easy by getting a birdie with an excellent putt from close to 20 feet after recovering well from the rough.

His play for this round was incredibly solid and he displayed a master class in staying calm, with four birdies and just one bogey.

All eyes will be on Rory for the last day especially after his calamitous collapse at the Masters in April when he finished ten shots off the lead after setting the pace for the majority of the tournament.

He has doubled his breathing space from his third day lead at Augusta however; he went into the final day four shots in front while his final day at the US Open sees him in front by eight as the chants of “Let’s Go Rory” were ringing out from the crowd, who are fully behind him to maintain his place at the top.

McIlroy’s lead must have been deflating for the chasing pack as Jason Day and Lee Westwood both had both shot very impressive 65’s to tie for third with Robert Garrigus but then look up to see McIlroy’s trademark shaggy hair disappearing out of sight at the summit of the leader board.

Last year’s winner Graeme McDowell stands at evens for the championship and tied for 21 while Padraig Harrington is 15 places behind him, tied for 36 at 3-over after two consecutive bogeys on the 10th and 11th holes were followed up by a double-bogey on the 12th.

Sportsnewsireland.com will have live score updates on all GAA Championship matches over the summer.

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