Graeme McDowell shares Players Championship lead

Graeme McDowell
McDowell birdied the first and then chipped in at the second to move to 11 under

Graeme McDowell and Nick Watney shared the lead after day three of the Players Championship at Sawgrass.

After a lengthy storm delay, the pair managed only five holes of their third rounds, making the final day a marathon affair for all the leaders.

Northern Ireland's McDowell, joint third overnight, birdied the first before chipping in at the short third to move to 11 under.

The delayed third round will resume at 0745 local time (1245 BST) on Sunday.

American Watney also took advantage of soft greens to birdie one and two.

McDowell, the reigning US Open champion, said: "I could see someone going and shooting 62, 63 tomorrow. I think there's a low score on this golf course, depending on what the wind does.

"But it really has opened the field up a little bit, these conditions. It's going to be exciting. This is probably one of the most exciting finishes in world golf, and to have that many guys within striking distance tomorrow, it's going to be a lot of fun hopefully to be part of."

Ben Curtis
Ben Curtis plays his approach to the infamous island hole, number 17

Halfway leader David Toms, who missed a string of makeable putts, was one behind rather than one in front and he shared third with US compatriot Steve Stricker.

England's Luke Donald had his first bogey of the week when he failed to get up and down from just off the fifth green, but he had birdied the long second before that setback to end the day on eight under with Martin Kaymer. Both Europeans are targeting the world number one spot as well as the title.

Kaymer burst into a share of first place with four opening birdies and then another at the seventh.

But the German, who could go back to world number one ahead of the absent Lee Westwood with a top-two finish, bogeyed the next three before coming back with yet another birdie.

Londoner Brian Davis was right in the mix after birdies on the first two, but he went back to six under with bogeys on the fifth and seventh.

Phil Mickelson, like Donald requiring a win to go top of the rankings, reached six under when he eagled the 16th for the second time in the week and then almost aced the 17th.

But in the gathering gloom he bogeyed the last for a 69 and five under overall.

Scot Martin Laird, his playing partner for the third day running, managed only a 76 and so was down on two over, while Justin Rose had slipped back to two under and Ian Poulter was one further back.