Ernie needs one more good round in Greensboro

Just one more round, and if Ernie Els keeps it together, he will keep himself in the frame as the Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, North Carolina goes into its final round.

He carded a third round of one-under-par 69 to find himself five off the pace set by Webb Simpson at 15-under, with Tommy ‘Two Gloves’ Gainey in second two strokes back.

The Big Easy will be paired with Retief Goosen in the final round after the Goose signed for a two-under-par 68 to join Els at 10-under through 54 holes in a share of sixth place.

Els’ putting has been under the spotlight in a poor year, but the use of a belly putter is starting to pay dividends as he has played himself into contention – and a spot in the FedEx Cup playoffs which climax the US PGA Tour season.

“Feeling good about it,” he said. “I’d like to make more of those putts. It seems like I missed quite a few from inside 12 feet, so it’s a little frustrating.”

That was in contrast to the confidence he felt after the first two rounds – he shot 65 and 66 – but it is something he will work really hard on ahead of the final round, where a good finish will be hugely significant to the three-time major champion.

“You know, not only am I trying to win the tournament,” he said, “but I don’t want to screw up too badly where I might miss the playoffs. There’s a lot of pressure.”

He feels he might battle to make up the deficit and win the tournament, but a top-10 – or, better yet, a top-five – will represent a major turnaround in his year.

“I needed to be at 12 to really be in it,” he said. “On this course to make up five shots is going to be very difficult. But I’m going to try and shoot as low as I can tomorrow and see where it takes me.”

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