Four tied through 54 holes at Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship

SHANGHAI — Blake Windred of Australia ended a rough back nine Saturday with a 5-foot birdie to salvage a 2-over 74 and join a four-way tie for the lead going into the final round of the Asia-Pacific Amateur.

Ren Yonezawa of Japan had the lead until missing a short par putt on the par-5 18th. He shot a 73.

They were at 8-under 208, along with Yung-Hua Liu of Taiwan and Yuto Katsuragawa of Japan, who each shot 69 at Sheshan International.

Full-field scores from the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship

In the previous 10 editions of the Asia-Pacific Amateur, there had never been a tie after 54 holes.

Now there are four sharing the lead, with plenty more poised to win the tournament and earn exemptions to the Masters and Open Championship.

Six others, including world amateur No. 1 and defending champion Takumi Kanaya, were within three of the lead.

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Golf Channel to air four-man skins game featuring Woods, McIlroy

American viewers looking to watch a new four-man skins game exhibition in Japan featuring Tiger Woods and newly-minted FedExCup champ Rory McIlroy will be able to watch it on Golf Channel.

The event, called “The Challenge: Japan Skins” and also featuring Jason Day and Hideki Matsuyama, will be played Oct. 21 ahead of the inaugural Zozo Championship. All four players are slated to participate in the 72-hole event, with both the exhibition and regular tournament played at the Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club in Chiba, Japan.

American viewers can tune into coverage on Golf Channel beginning at 11 p.m. ET on Sunday, Oct. 20. Viewers outside the U.S. can watch the four-man match via GolfTV.

Woods, who has not played competitively since last month’s BMW Championship, is expected to make the Zozo his next start. It will mark his first time inside the ropes in Japan since 2006.

“I haven’t played a skins format in quite some time, so it will be fun to try something a little different and add a few strategic elements as we compete,” Woods said in a release. “There has always been some friendly banter between us, and that will continue until we get to the first tee.”

McIlroy, who is in the field this week at the BMW PGA Championship, won the $15 million prize for claiming the FedExCup title last month at East Lake and was recently voted PGA Tour Player of the Year. Like Day and Matsuyama, he’ll be making his debut appearance in a televised exhibition match.

“There are so many fun elements to The Challenge that will have me wanting to take home that title – playing with Hideki on his home turf, Tiger coming back to Japan with a green jacket,” McIlroy said. “The motivation is certainly there for me, and I’m a huge fan of the skins format. I love the way it rewards attacking play and think it suits my game quite well.”

With a 1 p.m. local time start, the exhibition is expected to finish “under floodlights” according to a release, with each hole assigned a monetary value that will increase as the round progresses. Players will have to win a hole outright to take a skin, and the event will also feature “special in-match challenges and surprises.”

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