Langer three ahead at Senior Players Championship

Sat Jun 28, 2014 8:00pm EDT
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(Reuters) - Bernhard Langer survived a poor start and a strong challenge from Kenny Perry to stretch his lead to three shots after Saturday's third round of the Senior Players Championship in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The 56-year-old German, seeking his third major title on the over-50s Champions Tour, recovered from two bogeys in the first five holes with a superb display of putting on the back nine to fire a four-under-par 66 at Fox Chapel Golf Club.

Langer, who had been two strokes in front overnight, reeled off four birdies in five holes from the 12th to regain control of the tournament before ending the day with a 15-under total of 195.

American Perry, who won last year's Senior Players Championship by two shots at Fox Chapel, was alone in second at 12 under after carding a sizzling 65 that included an eagle at the par-five second and six birdies.

Perry, who clinched his third consecutive major on the Champions Tour with victory at the Regions Tradition in May, had been one ahead with four holes to play but slipped back with a bogey at the 16th before the fast-finishing Langer took charge.

Left-hander Russ Cochran (63) and fellow Americans Joe Durant (67) and Bill Glasson (68) were tied for third at 11 under in the third of the year's five senior major championships.

Langer, whose previous major wins on the Champions Tour came at the 2010 Senior Open Championship and the 2010 U.S. Senior Open, is taking nothing for granted with several quality players in close pursuit and 18 holes to be played on Sunday.

"There are about 10 other guys within striking distance," the German, a twice former Masters champion, told reporters after moving back to the top of the leaderboard with birdies at the 12th, 14th, 15th and 16th. "It's not over by any means.

"Kenny played very well here on this golf course last year.   Continued...

German golfer Bernhard Langer smiles during the Par 3 Contest ahead of the Masters golf tournament at the Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia April 9, 2014. REUTERS/Mike Blake