SILVIS, ILLINOIS – JULY 06: C.T. Pan of Taiwan hits his tee shot on the 15th hole during the third round of the John Deere Classic at TPC Deere Run on July 06, 2024 in Silvis, Illinois. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

Chinese Taipei’s C.T. Pan carded a 3-under 68 in the third round of the John Deere Classic on Saturday to stay in the hunt for a second PGA TOUR title and also for a prized spot in The Open Championship. The 32-year-old, who began the day as the joint 36-hole co-leader, made bogey on the final hole at TPC Deere Run – his first dropped shot in 49 holes – but at four shots back of the new leader Davis Thomson, the Asian star remains in the title mix at tied fourth place. Thompson fired a stunning 62 to lead on 21-under 192, with Eric Cole and England’s Aaron Rai, who held the overnight shared lead, lying two behind in joint second place following rounds of 64 and 66 respectively. Pan’s compatriot Kevin Yu and Korea’s Sungjae Im will enter the final round tied 21st  place after battling to scores of 69 and 70 respectively while S.H. Kim posted a 69 for T41. Pan, whose lone PGA TOUR victory was at the 2019 RBC Heritage, is determined to maintain his fight for a long-awaited second victory. He hopes his putter will strike it hot as he chases down the leader. “I’m four shots behind, so I have to give everything I have tomorrow,” said Pan, who is bound for his third successive Olympic Games in Paris next month after winning the bronze medal in Tokyo three years ago. “I wouldn’t say nervous, but I will definitely do my best and try to make as many birdies as possible.” Pan will have added motivation to launch an assault on Sunday as the top two finishers not exempt for The Open will earn coveted spots at Royal Troon in two weeks’ time. He previously competed in The Open Championship in 2014, 2019, and 2021. “To me it’s more like a bonus I guess, The Open exemptions. Like I said, I just need to get out there and make a lot of putts to have a chance,” he said. Thompson continued his recent fine run of form to grab his second career 54-hole lead on the PGA TOUR, thanks to nine birdies on a blemish-free card. Having finished T9 and T2 in his two most recent starts at the U.S. Open and Rocket Mortgage Classic, he will be eager to convert his two-shot lead into a title in his 63rd career start. “Yeah, been a while (since he secured the third round lead at the 2023 The American Express). It’s cool to have hard work pay off and put yourself in these moments, and hopefully I can take advantage of it tomorrow,” said Thompson, who holds two second-place finishes at the 2023 American Express and Myrtle Beach Classic this year. “Last week I was four back going into Sunday. I didn’t really know what it would take to win that golf tournament. I played really solid Sunday. Just came up one shot short. It’s a new week. I feel like I’ve been playing well. Just tried to keep it going. Yeah, hopefully I got one more good one in me tomorrow.” Third-Round Notes – Saturday, July 6, 2024 Weather: Mostly sunny. High of 82. Wind NW 4-8 mph. Third-Round Leaderboard

Pos.PlayerR1R2 Total1Davis Thompson636762192 (-21)T2Eric Cole626864194 (-19)T2Aaron Rai656366194 (-19)T4Hayden Springer597166196 (-17)T4C.T. Pan656368196 (-17)


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