Martin Laird and Colin Montgomerie chasing Scottish double in US

Martin Laird is 18 holes away from hitting the jackpot in Las Vegas for the second time in his PGA Tour career.

Sunday, 11th October 2020, 11:21 am
Martin Laird hits from the fairway on the 18th hole during round three of the Shriners Hospitals For Children Open at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas. Picture: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Martin Laird hits from the fairway on the 18th hole during round three of the Shriners Hospitals For Children Open at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas. Picture: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

And the Saltire is also flying high in North Carolina as Colin Montgomerie chases a repeat victory on the Champions Tour.

Laird shares the lead with American Patrick Cantlay heading into the final round of the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open at TPC Summerlin.

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The 37-year-old Scot carded an eagle and four birdies as he backed up opening rounds of 65 and 63 with another 65 to sit alongside Cantlay on 20-under-par.

Colin Montgomerie walks up the fourth hole during the first round of the SAS Championship at Prestonwood Country Club INorth Carolina. Picture: Chris Keane/Getty Images

Laird landed his PGA Tour breakthrough in this event 11 years ago before adding the Arnold Palmer Invitational in 2011 then the Valero Texas Open in 2013.

The Glaswegian suffered a torn meniscus in his left knee prior to the US circuit restarting in June and had to rely on a sponsor's invitation to play in this event.

"I've been hitting it great all week," he said after the third round. "It was definitely a little trickier with the breeze picking up and it was swirling on the front nine.

"But I really played nicely tee to green. Picked my spots where I could be aggressive, and then just kind of played safe on some holes."

Laird had already picked up shots at the fifth and eighth before he rolled in a 24-footer for an eagle-3 at the ninth for the second day running.

He then added birdies at the 13th and 15th coming home and has played the last 37 holes without a bogey as he bids to join Jim Furyk (1995, 1998, 1999) and Kevin Na (2011, 2019) as multiple winners of the event.

"More of the same tomorrow," added the Denver-based player. "I'm not going to change anything because it's been working and I'm in a good spot, so just keep going and hopefully have fun tomorrow."Laird explained that it was due to the knee surgery he underwent in June that he is going down on his right knee to line up putts.

"I don't feel anything swinging or walking, but I can't sit down on my heels to read a putt," he said.

"Literally the only thing that bugs it is like squatting down sitting on my heels to read a putt, so I've got to kind of get down on my knee. Feel like a bit of an old man out here doing that."

American quartet Matthew Wolf, Wyndham Clark, Brian Harman and Austin Cook are two shots behind the leaders, with US Open champion Bryson DeChambeau slipping seven off the pace after a 71.

Montgomerie is also tied for the lead in the SAS Championship in North Carolina as he bids to land that title on the Champions Tour for the second time in four years.

The 57-year-old added a 67 to his opening 68 to sit alongside Darren Clarke (69-66) and Woody Austin (66-69) on nine-under-par at Prestonwood Country Club in Cary.

Montgomerie, who is chasing his eighth title triumph on the US over-50s circuit, finished birdie-birdie in his five-under second-round salvo.

On a tightly-packed leaderboard, major winners Vijay Singh, Bernhard Langer and David Toms are all one behind while Jim Furyk and Ernie Els are also in the title hunt on six-under.A message from the Editor:

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