Mickelson, DiMarco share lead at Augusta

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/G/Golfgeneric.jpg' class='caption'> Phil Mickelson and Chris DiMarco share the lead at six-under par after the third round of the 68th Masters at the Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:06 IST
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Phil Mickelson and Chris DiMarco share the lead at six-under par after the third round of the 68th Masters at the Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia, USA. Paul Casey sits two shots further back at four-under, while two-times Masters champion Bernard Langer, Ernie Els and KJ Choi share fourth place at three-under. Overnight leader Justin Rose suffered a disastrous nine-over par round of 81 and finished the day at three-over for the championship. Saturday at the Masters has traditionally been the day of change at the Augusta National Golf Club. The third round of the 68th Masters saw most of the overnight challengers drop down the leaderboard. KJ Choi carded an even-par round of 70, though, and remained in contention at three-under par. Ernie Els also sits at three-under after he carded a one-under par third round of 71. The Big Easy was two-under for the day at the turn, but dropped shots at the 11th and 13th. The South African rolled in a birdie at the 15th, though, and sits three shots off the pace going into the final round. Bernhard Langer joins Choi and Els in a share of fourth place. The German produced a fine round of three-under par 69, after producing an eagle at the 15th, and will be perfectly positioned to add a third green jacket to his collection on Sunday. Paul Casey carded one of the rounds of the day to move up into third place on the leaderboard at four-under par. The Briton sunk five birdie putts on the way to a round of four-under par 68, and has a chance to become the first Augusta debutant to win the Masters since Fuzzy Zoeller in 1979. Casey currently sits two shots off the lead, which is shared by Phil Mickelson and Chris DiMarco. Starting the day four shots off the pace after the second round, DiMarco matched Casey's round of 68 to move to the top of the leaderboard. While overnight leader Justin Rose slipped down the field on the way to a round of 81, DiMarco was making leaps in the opposite direction. The 35-year-old American appears to have the measure of this treacherous Augusta course—he didn't drop a single shot on Saturday and carded four birdies. Mickelson currently holds the unenviable tag of one of the best players to have never won a major title. But this may not be the case on Sunday evening if the American can repeat his third round form. Like DiMarco, Mickelson covered the course without dropping a shot and carded a second consecutive round of three-under par 69 for a share of the lead on six-under par. History is certainly on the side of Mickelson and DiMarco - the last 13 winners at Augusta National have all come from the fourth round's final group. Winners of the Masters traditionally receive a green jacket from the previous year's champion. Bernhard Langer won the Masters in 1985 and 1993. (AP)

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