Johnson’s eight birdies have been essentially the most by him in a single spherical at a serious and helped offset a bogey and double bogey on the entrance 9 as he carded a five-under 65 and was nine-under par 201 via 56 holes at TPC Harding Park.
Johnson is one away from Scottie Scheffler and Cameron Champ with Collin Morikawa, Paul Casey and two-time defending champion Brooks Koepka all lurking a shot additional adrift.
“I putted rather well. That was key,” stated Johnson, who leads the sphere in strokes gained with the brief stick this week.
The former world primary and 2016 U.S. Open champion is seeking to avenge his loss on the 2010 PGA Championship, the place he was main getting into the ultimate gap however was hit with a controversial two-stroke penalty for grounding his membership in a bunker and completed tied for fifth.
Johnson stated touchdown the ball safely on the course’s slender fairways can be key to hoisting the Wanamaker Trophy on Sunday.
“Tomorrow I undoubtedly must hit some extra fairways, as a result of it is actually robust taking part in this golf course from the tough,” stated Johnson, who hit seven of 14 fairways on Saturday.
eight birdies. #PGAChamp chief. @DJohnsonPGA 👏👏👏 https://t.co/0nZUwaZEiK
— PGA Championship (@PGAChampionship) 1596935749000
Johnson can be paired with Scheffler, who signed a busy scorecard that included eight birdies and three bogeys together with one on the tough par-four 18th, a gap that might show vital on Sunday given the bunched leaderboard.
The 24-year-old Scheffler stated he was making an attempt to maintain his wits about him as he appears to be like to safe his first main title.
“There’s undoubtedly some nerves however simply received to attempt to deal with them as greatest I can and exit and play, and I did a very good job of that in the present day.”
Hard-hitting Sacramento native Champ fired a 67 beneath foggy and chilly San Francisco skies, circumstances he stated he’s nicely used to taking part in in because the 25-year-old additionally appears to be like to seize his maiden main.
“Obviously there’s a comfortability,” he stated.
“I’ve performed quite a lot of golf down right here rising up in junior occasions, state ams. And this has comparable climate circumstances as Monterey, which I’ve performed so much in, so I’m undoubtedly used to that, sort of chilly and damp.”
Four-time main champion Koepka, who had an uncharacteristic three bogey stretch late however birdied the final in his spherical of 69, stated he would use his appreciable expertise on the game’s largest phases to his benefit even when there are not any followers in attendance because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I really feel very snug across the lead within the massive occasions,” he stated.
“Obviously we do not have followers right here, which makes it somewhat completely different once they’re hooting and hollering.
“It may be enjoyable in the event that they’re cheering for you, but when they’re towards you it is not a lot enjoyable. It’s going to really feel fully completely different than anyone we have ever performed. I’m trying ahead to it tomorrow.
“It ought to be a enjoyable shootout.”