Justin Thomas shot a 2-under 70 on Saturday and is tied for the lead with fellow American Scott Brown at 9-under after three rounds of The CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges in Jeji Island, South Korea.
Thomas rebounded from his second-round 74 with five birdies on Saturday, although his round could have been much lower if not for a double bogey on No. 8 and a bogey on No. 10. Brown had three birdies on the day, including two over his final four holes after opening his back nine with a pair of bogeys.
“You can’t put it into words, but I know for a fact I played better today than I did on Thursday when I shot 9-under,” Thomas said, per Golf Digest. “It’s just so hard out here, I’ve never played a place where the wind swirls as much as it does here.”
India’s Anirban Lahiri and Australia’s Marc Leishman are two shots back at 7-under, with South Korea’s Whee Kim among a group of players another shot off the pace along with American Lucas Glover and Australian Cameron Smith.
Another South Korean, Ben An, carded the low round of the day with a 5-under 67 and climbed 28 spots into a tie for eighth place. There were only five rounds in the 60s on Saturday.
The fourth-ranked Thomas is the highest-ranked player in the field. The only other Top 10 player in the event, Australia’s Jason Day, shot a 1-under 71 on Saturday and is six shots off the lead in a tie for 16th at 3-under for the tournament.
Second-round leader Luke List struggled in the windy conditions, falling into a tie for eighth place with a 76 that included three bogeys and a pair of double bogeys.
NOTES: K.J. Choi, the most successful South Korean on the PGA tour, shot an 82 on Saturday to fall 35 spots into a tie for 65th at 9-over for the tournament. Recently-named Rookie of the Year Xander Schauffele shot a 78 after carding an 82 in the second round and is 13-over par for the tournament after shooting a 3-under 69 in the first round. … There were five rounds in the 80s on Saturday: Choi, Danny Lee (80), Jonas Blixt (80), Ryan Ruffels (81) and Grayson Murray (81).