American Dustin Johnson is one round away from being the first player to win three WGC events in the same year.
He attacked the course in Shanghai on Saturday en route to a 4-under 68 to open up a 6-shot lead headed to the last 18 holes.
Last year’s US Open winner, Brooks Koepka, opened the round trailing Johnson by one stroke, but that all changed on the par-5 No. 8 as Johnson birdied it and Koepka absorbed at triple bogey.
“I’m not going to change anything — play the golf course just how I’ve been playing it,” said Johnson. “I’m in a good position going into tomorrow, but I’m still going to have to go out and play a really solid round if I want to get it done.”
The world’s No. 1 player has 22 birdies through 54 holes and is 17-under. Earlier this year he won the WGC-Mexico Championship and the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.
Justin Rose, who opened the day in third place, shot a 72 and fell eight strokes behind.
“(Johnson’s) going to wake up in good shape and go ahead and play a solid round of golf. If he does that, the tournament is over,” Rose said. “Other than that, playing for second barring something crazy from him.”