Ishikawa eats into Crowns deficit


Defending champion Ryo Ishikawa shot a 3-under 67 Saturday to draw within six strokes of the lead going into the final round of The Crowns — the same margin he made up last year with a stunning 58.

Nine shots off the lead at the start of the day, Ishikawa mixed five birdies with two bogeys to move from a share of 24th into a tie for 12th at 3-under 207 at Nagoya Golf Club.

Australia’s Brendan Jones shot a 68 to take a two-stroke lead over South Koreans I.J. Jang and Kim Sung Yoon.

Jang snapped up nine birdies, including six in a row around the turn, on his way to a 62, the day’s best round. Kim carded a 68.

“I closed the gap, and that was one of my goals for today,” Ishikawa said. “I know people want me to repeat last year’s comeback. But there are many people who think that kind of round is impossible to repeat, and I’m one of them.”