In near exhaustion, India’s Lahiri ready for last throw of the dice at THE NORTHERN TRUST

Anirbi GolfNew Jersey: Anirban Lahiri scrambled to a level par 71 in the third round of THE NORTHERN TRUST on Saturday to fall off the pace in his hopes to progress into next week’s BMW Championship in the FedExCup Playoffs.

But the Indian star does not intend to throw in the towel just yet.

The 34-year-old continued to battle with fatigue at Liberty National Golf Club in New Jersey, mixing his card with six birdies, including four over his last six holes, four bogeys and one double bogey which left him in tied 60th place on 4-under 209. Cameron Smith (60) and Jon Rahm (67) share the third round lead on 16-under in what is the first of three Playoffs events.

The good news though for Lahiri was the tournament’s decision to postpone Sunday’s final round to Monday due to an impending hurricane which he hopes will allow him to rest up and prepare for a do-or-die final round.

“Barring a 62 on Monday, I probably will have a few weeks off. I’ll have to try and get a 62 and get some rest in. Pleased that we’ve got tomorrow off and I’m not going to be on any thread mill or bicycle. I’m just going to rest and come out Monday, and try to shoot a low one,” said Lahiri.

He effectively needs a top-10 finish to progress into the second of three Playoffs tournament and currently lies eight shots out of the targeted mark. Lahiri got himself back into the FedExCup Playoffs this week after missing out on the past two seasons and he is keen to finish his campaign on a high note.

“If it doesn’t, it is still all good. I am happy with the way I am playing. It’s unfortunate that I am at a stage where physically, I’m a little limited and inhibited. I’ll try to deal with it and enjoy myself out there despite everything,” he said.

After making birdies on Hole Nos. 5 and 6 from four feet and 17 feet, Lahiri gave the shots straight back straight at the next two holes. He bogeyed 10 and doubled the 12th to fall to 3-over for the day before summing up his energy to produce four late birdies against a fourth bogey.

“It’s been the story of the last two days. I’ve been playing really good, playing solid to start, missed a few makeable opportunities and finally made a couple. I’m on the verge of exhaustion right now and my body is unable to cope with everything that has gone on the past two months. Safe to say, I had a five or six hole period where I was trying to hit shots and my body just said no and I got into some bad spots. It’s not often I make a double from 110 yards from the middle of the fairway which I did on 12. I’m quite happy with how I clawed my way back and made some birdies coming in.”