Saudi International R3

Johnson pulls clear of Perez in Saudi

February 04-07
Royal Greens G&CC, King Abdullah Economic City, Saudi Arabia
$3,500,000
Round 1, Round 2, Round 4


Saudi International 2021 R3 - Johnson pulls clear of Perez in Saudi
(Getty Images)


World Number One Dustin Johnson finished with back-to-back birdies to take a two shot lead into the final round of the Saudi International powered by SoftBank Investment Advisers as he attempts to win the title for a second time in three years.


Johnson pulled clear of the star studded field with four birdies in his opening ten holes, but his momentum was briefly halted by a double bogey six on the 13th . He restored his two stroke advantage by birdieing the two closing holes for a third round of 66.

“It was a good finish. I felt like I played really well all day, other than 13, but I didn’t think I hit that bad a shot. I pushed it a hair right of the flag but just came up well short of where I thought it would and ended up making 6 there.



“But other that than that, I drove it well and hit a lot of really good iron shots in there to give myself a lot of good chances at birdie. Didn’t hole a whole lot of putts. But finishing nicely definitely helped the day out.”

At 13 under par total the American is in pole position to add to his impressive record at Royal Greens Golf & Country Club, having claimed the inaugural title in 2019 and then finished runner up to Graeme McDowell 12 months ago.


“I like the golf course,” said Johnson. “I think it sets up good for me. I’ve liked it since the first time I came here a couple years ago. I feel like I’m swinging it well and giving myself all the chances tomorrow. Just need to hole a few putts.”

His nearest challenger is France’s Ryder Cup hopeful Victor Perez who carded a round of 66 to move to 11 under par, while English pair Tyrrell Hatton (66) and Andy Sullivan (68), Denmark’s Søren Kjeldsen (65) and American Tony Finau (67) are all three shots back on ten under.



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“The course was a bit more challenging on the back,” said Perez. “There were some really good pin positions, I think. 11 was tough. 12 was tough. 13 was tough. 14 was tough. It was just hard to get close. I think if you give yourself looks, but 20, 25 feet it’s harder to make putts compared to the front where there were more back stops and the par 5 was playing downwind and hit a good shot into 3 but it feeding towards the hole. A bit more accessible and I was able to take advantage. Happy to have made one on 17.

“(Playing with Dustin Johnson) obviously that’s as good as it gets. I’ll be very excited for the challenge. I think this is all you strive for. I think the Tour is doing great at having some of those great players being here and playing and giving us the chance, mostly staying in Europe the last two years, playing against those guys, it will be a great competition.”

Spain’s Sergio Garcia posted the lowest round of the day, a six under par 64, and is one of seven players in a share of seventh position on nine under par, along with Norway’s Viktor Hovland (67) and former World Number One Martin Kaymer (66).




Pos.
Player
To Par
R1
R2
R3
Total
1
Dustin Johnson
-13
67
64
66
197
2
Victor Perez
-11
67
66
66
199
T3
Tony Finau
-10
68
65
67
200
T3
Tyrrell Hatton
-10
67
67
66
200
T3
Søren Kjeldsen
-10
69
66
65
200
T3
Andy Sullivan
-10
66
66
68
200
T7
George Coetzee
-9
66
70
65
201
T7
Ryan Fox
-9
65
65
71
201
T7
Sergio Garcia
-9
70
67
64
201
T7
Calum Hill
-9
65
68
68
201
T7
David Horsey
-9
61
71
69
201
T7
Viktor Hovland
-9
68
66
67
201
T7
Martin Kaymer
-9
67
68
66
201
T14
Laurie Canter
-8
66
68
68
202
T14
Justin Rose
-8
68
66
68
202
T14
Matthew Southgate
-8
70
67
65
202
T14
Stephen Gallacher
-8
62
68
72
202
T18
Bryson DeChambeau
-7
65
70
68
203
T18
Kurt Kitayama
-7
67
68
68
203
T18
Kevin Na
-7
69
63
71
203
T18
Ian Poulter
-7
67
69
67
203
T18
Bernd Wiesberger
-7
64
68
71
203
T23
Paul Casey
-6
69
68
67
204
T23
Shane Lowry
-6
70
67
67
204
T23
Robert MacIntyre
-6
71
68
65
204
T23
Chris Paisley
-6
68
67
69
204
T23
Thomas Pieters
-6
65
71
68
204
T23
Lee Westwood
-6
67
70
67
204
T23
Ashun Wu
-6
68
68
68
204
T23
Fabrizio Zanotti
-6
66
71
67
204
T31
Sean Crocker
-5
68
72
65
205
T31
Masahiro Kawamura
-5
66
71
68
205
T31
Maximilian Kieffer
-5
71
67
67
205
T31
Wilco Nienaber
-5
71
67
67
205
T31
Cormac Sharvin
-5
70
69
66
205
T36
Christiaan Bezuidenhout
-4
68
69
69
206
T36
Tommy Fleetwood
-4
68
65
73
206
T36
Justin Harding
-4
68
70
68
206
T36
Jason Kokrak
-4
70
67
69
206
T36
Antoine Rozner
-4
67
67
72
206
T36
Julian Suri
-4
69
67
70
206
T36
Justin Walters
-4
68
68
70
206
T36
Jeff Winther
-4
67
73
66
206
T44
Rafa Cabrera Bello
-3
69
69
69
207
T44
Ross Fisher
-3
69
70
68
207
T44
Rasmus Højgaard
-3
70
69
68
207
T44
Jazz Janewattananond
-3
69
70
68
207
T44
Takumi Kanaya
-3
67
71
69
207
T44
Marcus Kinhult
-3
65
68
74
207
T44
Mikko Korhonen
-3
66
70
71
207
T44
Phil Mickelson
-3
68
67
72
207
T44
James Morrison
-3
67
73
67
207
T44
Matthieu Pavon
-3
68
72
67
207
T44
Patrick Reed
-3
69
70
68
207
T44
Matthias Schwab
-3
68
72
67
207
T44
Richard Sterne
-3
69
70
68
207
T57
Kiradech Aphibarnrat
-2
73
67
68
208
T57
Steven Brown
-2
68
67
73
208
T57
Dean Burmester
-2
69
71
68
208
T57
Thomas Detry
-2
67
70
71
208
T57
Jamie Donaldson
-2
72
67
69
208
T57
Joost Luiten
-2
67
66
75
208
T57
Jhonattan Vegas
-2
66
74
68
208
T57
Joachim B. Hansen
-2
70
70
68
208
T65
Pablo Larrazabal
-1
69
71
69
209
T65
David Law
-1
70
70
69
209
T65
Michael Lorenzo-Vera
-1
69
70
70
209
T65
Guido Migliozzi
-1
68
67
74
209
T65
Wade Ormsby
-1
71
69
69
209
T65
Oliver Wilson
-1
68
72
69
209
T71
Abraham Ancer
E
71
69
70
210
T71
Danny Willett
E
67
72
71
210
T73
Romain Langasque
3
69
67
77
213
T73
Graeme McDowell
3
70
70
73
213
T73
Ross McGowan
3
68
72
73
213
T73
Julien Guerrier
3
70
70
73
213
CUT
Ignacio Elvira Mijares
1
71
70
141
CUT
Scott Hend
1
71
70
141
CUT
Lucas Herbert
1
70
71
141
CUT
David Howell
1
71
70
141
CUT
Francesco Laporta
1
70
71
141
CUT
Min Woo Lee
1
69
72
141
CUT
Haotong Li
1
65
76
141
CUT
David Lipsky
1
70
71
141
CUT
Edoardo Molinari
1
73
68
141
CUT
Haydn Porteous
1
70
71
141
CUT
Kalle Samooja
1
69
72
141
CUT
Shubhankar Sharma
1
69
72
141
CUT
Joel Stalter
1
69
72
141
CUT
Matt Wallace
1
73
68
141
CUT
Chris Wood
1
73
68
141
CUT
Harry Hall
2
70
72
142
CUT
Garrick Higgo
2
70
72
142
CUT
Brandon Stone
2
70
72
142
CUT
Adri Arnaus
3
69
74
143
CUT
Alexander Björk
3
72
71
143
CUT
Kristoffer Broberg
3
70
73
143
CUT
Jorge Campillo
3
69
74
143
CUT
John Catlin
3
69
74
143
CUT
Gavin Kyle Green
3
71
72
143
CUT
Miguel Angel Jiménez
3
72
71
143
CUT
Andrew Johnston
3
70
73
143
CUT
Zander Lombard
3
72
71
143
CUT
Adrian Otaegui
3
68
75
143
CUT
Aaron Rai
3
69
74
143
CUT
Jason Scrivener
3
75
68
143
CUT
Grant Forrest
4
69
75
144
CUT
Benjamin Hebert
4
71
73
144
CUT
Scott Jamieson
4
74
70
144
CUT
Alexander Levy
4
71
73
144
CUT
Richie Ramsay
4
73
71
144
CUT
Paul Waring
4
71
73
144
CUT
Nino Bertasio
5
75
70
145
CUT
Thomas Bjørn
5
74
71
145
CUT
David Drysdale
5
70
75
145
CUT
Ernie Els
5
74
71
145
CUT
Jordan Smith
5
71
74
145
CUT
Shergo Al Kurdi (a)
6
69
77
146
CUT
Ashley Chesters
6
70
76
146
CUT
Lorenzo Gagli
6
71
75
146
CUT
Eduard Rousaud (a)
6
72
74
146
CUT
Henrik Stenson
6
72
74
146
CUT
Othman Almulla
7
71
76
147
CUT
Paul Dunne
7
73
74
147
CUT
Renato Paratore
7
72
75
147
CUT
Tapio Pulkkanen
7
73
74
147
CUT
Alvaro Quiros
7
71
76
147
CUT
Sami Valimaki
7
73
74
147
CUT
Oliver Fisher
8
72
76
148
CUT
Jayden Schaper
8
74
74
148
CUT
Sebastian Soderberg
8
73
75
148
CUT
Richard McEvoy
11
73
78
151
CUT
Andrea Pavan
13
74
79
153
CUT
Marc Warren
13
74
79
153
CUT
Saud Al Sharif
18
80
78
158
CUT
Faisal Salhab (a)
18
77
81
158
WD
Victor Dubuisson
E
71
69
140
DISQ
Raphael Jacquelin
6
76
61
137