Laird just two shots off pace in Hawaii

LUCAS Glover saw his lead cut to one stroke at the season-opening SBS Championship as Geoff Ogilvy and Scotland's Martin Laird closed the gap heading into the final round in Hawaii.

The US Open champion had led the 28-man field of 2009 PGA Tour tournament winners by three strokes on 15 under par at the halfway stage at the par 73, 7,411-yard Kapalua Resort Plantation Course.

In more difficult conditions as the wind returned to the Maui course for the third round, Glover was unable to build on his lead, shooting a two-under 71 having carded bogeys at the seventh and eighth holes before recovering with four birdies. That left the American at 17 under after 54 holes with defending champion Ogilvy just a shot in arrears after a 68. Laird shot a five-birdie, one-bogey 69 to take third place on 15 under heading into the last round.

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The Arizona-based Glaswegian was particularly happy with his form off the tee. "I hit it good again today, my only bogey was a three-putt," he said. "On this golf course you can hit a driver off pretty much every tee."

Laird said the return of Hawaii's high Kona winds after a two-day lull had not disturbed him.

"I played the course on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday in the winds that we had today and then we played on Thursday and Friday and it was like a new golf course for me. But it definitely paid off today. Now I'm just going to go out and try to do the same thing as I did the first three days, play aggressive, hit a lot of drivers.

"It's one of those golf courses where you're not as aggressive with your second shots. With the winds you don't want to be missing these greens. But I feel like I'm putting well and if I can give myself 20-25 feet every hole I feel like I can make some birdies."

England's Paul Casey posted his second 69 in a row to tie for 12th with a total of 11 under.