Graeme McDowell takes third round lead at Saudi International

Ryder Cup partners Graeme McDowell and Victor Dubuisson will go head-to-head in the final group of the Saudi International powered by SoftBank Investment Advisers with McDowell holding a one shot lead over the Frenchman.

Major Champion McDowell carded four birdies on the back nine at Royal Greens Golf and Country Club in a third round of 66 to move to 12 under par, while Dubuisson posted a bogey-free round of 65 for an 11 under par total.

The putter’s been a little ice cold the last sort of two rounds, but I got it heated back up on the back nine today and I’m going to have to putt well to have a chance tomorrow,” said McDowell. “Conditions were very tough today, so I’m very pleased with that back nine because I really felt like the back nine’s played very difficult this week and to sneak a few birdies out there coming in was very pleasing.”

The duo formed a formidable partnership as part of Europe’s victorious Ryder Cup team at Gleneagles in 2014, winning both of their foursome matches together.

They will be reunited for the final round on Sunday with both players looking to win on the European Tour for the first time in more than five years, Dubussion’s last victory coming at the 2015 Turkish Airlines Open and McDowell’s the year before that at the Open de France.

Malaysia’s Gavin Green is three shots back on nine under par following a round of 70 with defending champion Dustin Johnson one of three players on seven under par alongside Italy’s Renato Paratore (70) and France’s Victor Perez (73).

World Number One Brooks Koepka and five time Major Champion Phil Mickelson will start six shots back on six under par after rounds of 65 and 68 respectively.

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