Ilonen leads Willett by a shot at Irish Open

Mikko Ilonen during the third round of the 2014 Irish Open at Fota Island Resort in Cork, Ireland.
Mikko Ilonen during the third round of the 2014 Irish Open at Fota Island Resort in Cork, Ireland. ( Getty Images )

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Mikko Ilonen held onto his lead Saturday at the Irish Open, carding a 2-under 69 in the third round at Fota Island Resort in Cork, Ireland.

Ilonen bogeyed the par-3 17th to fall back into a share of the lead with Danny Willett, but birdied the par-5 18th to finish 54 holes at 12-under 201. Willett is in solo second, one shot back, after shooting a course-record 63 Saturday. Willett also aced the par-3 seventh hole. Graeme McDowell is third at 10 under.

Three spots in the Open Championship July 17-20 at Royal Liverpool are up for grabs at the Irish Open. The top three finishers not already eligible qualify while ties are broken based on the Official World Golf Ranking.

Willett is in position to grab one of those spots while all four players at T-3 – Frabrizio Zanotti, Matthew Baldwin, Kristoffer Broberg and Romain Wattel – have yet to earn Open Championship invites.