Berger says bring it on as strong winds forecast for Pebble Beach closer

Despite a costly late slip in round three, Daniel Berger could be in the ideal place to capture the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am

Daniel Berger was showing his mettle in round three of the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in California.

Hitting a series of low shots into the wind - "knee-high to a grasshopper", according to Sky Sports commentator Andrew Coltart - he was the player looking best equipped to deal with the challenges of the weather.

And when conditions allowed, he cashed in, making a little piece of history at the fourth hole and walking off with an eagle.

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But just when it seemed he could pull away from the field, the tournament was turned on its head by two late moments of drama.

After leaking oil with bogeys at 10, 12 and 14, playing partner Jordan Spieth thrillingly holed his approach for eagle at 16. And shortly after, Berger drove out of bounds at 18 and racked up a double bogey seven.

Instead of starting the final round two in front, Berger will now begin it two behind after that unexpected four-shot swing. But he knows this thing is far from done yet.

Here, Berger talks through Saturday's third round, including his eagle at the fourth.

On overall play and poor finish to his round

"I actually played pretty good. Obviously finished with a double, but I'm still two shots out of the lead, so I feel pretty good about my chances going into tomorrow.

"I hit a bunch of really good golf shots today. It was really tough, it was blowing 15, 20 all day and a bunch of putts that just barely missed.

I mean, it's a hard day when it blows at Pebble. So overall I'm pretty happy. Obviously would like that swing back on the last hole, but I'm not going to let it ruin my week for sure."

On being told he was the first man to drive the green at No.4 for 16 years

"I didn't know that. I didn't even know if I could get to the green. When they moved the tee up I was like I'm not doing anything other than hitting driver.

"So, I mean, it was nice to get that nice big bounce up there and make the putt. One of the few good things to happen to me today."

On Jordan Spieth jumping into the lead with a hole-out eagle

"That's what makes him special right there. He's a great player and I think there's many more wins in his career going forward.

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"But I mean, Jordan's going to have to play well because there's a lot of guys right there, so, regardless, it's not going to be handed to him, he's going to have to shoot a good score."

Windy final day in store but Berger ready for challenge

Berger tees off in the final round at 10:29am local time. That's 11 minutes before the final three-ball of Spieth, Nate Lashley and Tom Hoge.

There are 15 players within five shots of the lead and all of them - perhaps even those further back - will know there is much to play for.

A big reason is the challenging weather forecast. In short, it's going to blow! The north-west wind will be locked in at around 15mph for most of the golfing day and it could rise higher than that.

This is where Berger's hopes start to increase again.

Daniel Berger putting at Pebble Beach
Daniel Berger putting at Pebble Beach

The American first shot to attention when, as a rookie, he reached a playoff at the 2015 Honda Classic in Florida.

Three-time Major winner Padraig Harrington edged him out on that occasion but the then 21-year-old marked himself out as one for the future.

Speaking before that event six years ago, Florida local Berger said: "I'm used to it being windy. Hopefully it blows out here. That will play to my advantage. I'm just going to have some fun."

Fast forward to Pebble Beach 2021 and Berger was asked on Saturday evening if he expected the wind to blow on Sunday as much as it did in round three.

His response: "I haven't looked at the forecast so I don't know if it's expected to blow like this. I hope it does blow like this."

Well, Daniel, there's good news on that front. There aren't many in this field who actively want it to blow but he is definitely one of them.

Berger has won three times on the PGA Tour. In the most recent, the 2020 Charles Schwab Challenge, he started the day two shots behind, the same position he finds himself in here. In his previous win, the 2017 St. Jude Classic, he was three back after 54 holes.

Trying to win from behind whilst battling windy conditions... it almost sounds like the perfect recipe for a Daniel Berger win.

(Ahead of the final round, Daniel Berger is 6/1 with Sky Bet to take victory)

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