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Friday, 18 January, 2019

Keith Mitchell can throw down gauntlet to the long-time leader

Brandt Snedeker setting the pace in Carolina

Sergio Garcia has some work to do at the tenth hole
1 of 1

Sky Sports Golf, 6pm Sunday

Story so far
Thunderstorms brought play to a premature end in round three of the Wyndham Championship at Sedgefield Country Club, North Carolina, with Brandt Snedeker remaining atop the leaderboard.

Snedeker, 25-1 at the outset, has been in front since opening up with a spectacular 11-under-par 59 on Thursday. The former FedEx Cup champion has moved to 16 under par through seven holes of the third round, starting Sunday as a general 4-6 favourite.

Brian Gay is leading the chase – three shots behind with six holes of round three to play – with four players a further shot adrift.

With more thunder forecast for the next three days, the possibility of a 54-hole event exists. The US Tour's bemusing decision to send the players out in twoballs for round three, despite the forecast, means they are going to face a great challenge to complete 72 holes in the allotted time. It will likely be up to the sponsors and whether they are prepared to sanction a Monday finish.

-16 Brandt Snedeker (through 43 holes)
-13 Brian Gay (48)
-12 Trey Mullinax (48), Keith Mitchell (44), C.T. Pan (43), DA Points (42)
-11 Michael Thompson (54), Ryan Armour (51), Ryan Moore (49), Sergio Garcia (45)
-10 Jamie Lovemark (54) Rory Sabbatini (54), Martin Laird (54), Sangmoon Bae (54), Webb Simpson (54), Denny McCarthy (52), Jim Furyk (49), Nick Taylor (47), Brett Stegmaier (45), Harris English (44), David Hearn (42)

Best prices
4-6 B Snedeker, 8 B Gay, 14 K Mitchell, S Garcia, C.T. Pan, 25 R Moore, 28 T Mullinax, 40 DA Points, 66 D Hearn, 70 R Armour, 80 W Simpson, 100 bar

Final-day advice
Brandt Snedeker has got the Wyndham Championship at his mercy, resuming in round three on the easy par-four eighth, a gentle introduction to Sunday.

The two keys to this event are probably how Snedeker plays the 11th, 12th, 14th and 18th in round three – four testing holes where he could come unstuck – and whether round four escapes the thunder which is in the Greensboro air.

Snedeker has told reporters he is eager to play four rounds and believes that will give him his best chance of victory. He is either incredibly stupid or being economical with the truth – a three-round event would be a much easier one to convert from this position.

This is a tricky tournament for in-running punters to assess, with no access to the sponsors who will decide the length of the competition should the weather gods intervene again. Snedeker seems a fair price at 4-6, but he is winless for 30 months and could easily wobble if pressured in a round four.

Sergio Garcia tugged his drive into the rough off the tee at the tenth hole before the suspension in play, so the Spaniard is struggling for par there, but Keith Mitchell has a nine-foot birdie putt awaiting at the ninth. Mitchell and C.T. Pan can move closer to Snedeker in round three.

Mitchell is full of power, will appreciate the softening of conditions, and has impressed a great deal in his rookie season, most recently when finishing seventh in the John Deere Classic, a similar assignment to this, a month ago.

Snedeker is obviously the most likely winner, but Mitchell could be the value shout at this stage. If he drains that birdie putt, he will move within three shots, and would still have hope of challenging for the 54-hole lead. And another 18 holes would give the 26-year-old slugger a much greater chance.

Outright recommendation
K Mitchell
1pt each-way 14-1 bet365, BoyleSports

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Mitchell is full of power, will appreciate the softening of conditions, and has impressed a great deal in his rookie season
E.W. Terms
Sky bet