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Sonoda cards tournament-record 61

Kyodo

Shunsuke Sonoda fired a tournament record 11-under-par 61 to grab the sole lead after the third round of the Shigeo Nagashima Invitational on Saturday.

Playing in his fourth tournament since returning from an injury to his left knee, the 23-year-old Sonoda rolled off 11 birdies in a bogey-free round, rewriting the tournament record by two strokes at The North Country Club.

Sonoda, who started the day in a share of 21st, moved to 15-under 201, placing him atop the leaderboard with a two-stroke lead over Hiroyuki Fujita. He knocked down five birdies on the front nine and had six in a row from the par-5, 13th hole.

The 44-year-old Fujita, last season’s JGTO money winner, carded a 68 to sit alone in second, and Yusaku Miyazato was a further shot back after turning in a 67. Shingo Katayama (69) was among seven golfers four shots off the pace at 11 under.