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Abraham Ancer, Cameron Young break away from pack at Saudi International

A week after Rory McIlroy edged Patrick Reed at the DP World Tour’s Dubai Desert Classic, we have another PGA Tour vs. LIV Golf battle on our hands – at least for those who care to view it that way.

This time LIV’s Abraham Ancer leads Cameron Young, the Tour’s reigning rookie of the year, by two shots entering Sunday’s final round of the Asian Tour’s PIF Saudi International.

Ancer fired a 6-under 64 Saturday at Royal Greens Golf and Country Club to move to 17 under while Young posted a third straight 65 and sits at 15 under, five shots clear of third, which is shared by two LIV members, Matt Wolff and Sadom Kaewkanjana, and Tour pro Lucas Herbert.

Ancer’s last worldwide victory came at the 2021 WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational, but the world No. 37 told reporters Saturday that he wasn’t focusing on anything except his game – LIV-Tour storylines included.

“Another very solid round,” Ancer said. “Happy with no dropped shots. That’s always my goal. On a golf course like this where it’s blowing pretty good, I’m really, really happy. My ball-striking has definitely been on, and I’ve been rolling it really nice all week. Yeah, extremely happy. Not really focused on what everybody else is doing. Just trying to play the same game I’ve been playing the past three days. … It’s nice to see my name up there. Can’t really focus on that. Just got to do it again.”

Full-field scores from the PIF Saudi International

Young, who last summer said he was “very interested” in joining LIV Golf before ultimately deciding to remain with the PGA Tour, hasn’t lifted a trophy since going back-to-back on the Korn Ferry Tour in Summer 2021. However, he did post seven top-3 finishes last season, two of them in majors.

“I think I’ve played really solidly,” Young said. “Obviously, Abe’s playing some really nice golf. So, I think tomorrow will be fun. … If the wind is similar to today, it will probably take 62 or [6]3 or [6]4 because I don’t see Abraham shooting anything bad.”

Wolff, who carded the round of the day, a 63, was also asked about catching Ancer and making it a three-horse race.

“I’ve been focusing on having a good time out there, keeping it light and easy and let things come to me and not force things,” Wolff replied. “When I get thinking about my swing or where I’m at on the leaderboard or anything like that, that’s when I get kind of panicked and a little more frustrated a little quicker and stuff like that. For me it’s trying to stay calm, be happy, have fun, and let it come to me.

“I know I have a game to come out and win, so if I do me and play the way I should, I might be on top. If not, I know I had a good week.”