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Johnson claims lead as Woods stumbles

ZACH Johnson had to overcome a weather delay to finish his round before he established a two-stroke lead over an enigmatic Tiger Woods after the third round at the Quail Hollow Championship in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Saturday.

Johnson, who had to complete the final hole after a weather delay of more than an hour, parred the last to shoot 68 for 11-under 205, two ahead of Woods, who bogeyed the final two holes to hand Johnson the lead.

The world No. 1 carded 70 to slip into a tie for second at nine-under 207 with fellow Americans Lucas Glover (68) and George McNeill (70).

Johnson, the 2007 Masters winner, recovered from a poor start that included two bogeys in the first four holes.

"I didn't get off to the start I necessarily wanted but I remained patient and I think that was the key for me today," Johnson told reporters.

"The tee shot I hit on (the par-three sixth hole) really calmed me down and that birdie propelled me the rest of the day.

"I'm happy to be (leading) but at the same time I don't want to get overly complacent."

Woods' problems began at the par-three 17th, where, perhaps guarding against the water on the left, he pushed a seven-iron that settled on the right edge of the green, 60-feet from the hole, with a ridge to negotiate.

He subsequently three-putted, and then compounded his misery by missing a six-foot putt at the last. "I found my swing a little bit," Woods said. "Unfortunately, I couldn't finish off my round again.

"Two seven-irons the last two holes to make two bogeys is not very good, but at least I've got a shot going into tomorrow."

New Zealand teen Danny Lee threatened several times during the day, but finished poorly, dropping three shots in the final two holes to shoot 70 and fall five strokes from the lead.


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