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Padraig Harrington takes over the lead

Ireland’s Padraig Harrington produced a six-under round of 65 to grab a one shot lead at the Tampa Bay Championship at the Innisbrook golf club on Friday.

Starting on the back nine, Harrington was two-under with no bogeys at the turn and then produced a lively front nine with five birdies and a bogey, on the par four sixth.

“It is my low score of the year, so I’m happy with that,” Harrington told reporters. “I felt quite good. When I got it in position, I hit a lot of really nice iron shots.

“I got a few breaks as well during the round, which you generally always do when you shoot 65.”

Harrington’s last win in the U.S came at the PGA Championship in Aug. 2008 - the third of his three major triumphs.

Sweden’s Carl Pettersson, who had a bogey-free three under-par round on Friday, was tied with Americans Jim Furyk and Bubba Watson and South African Retief Goosen in second.

Pettersson has struggled with his game over the past year and blamed weight loss for his dip in form.

“I lost a lot of weight at the beginning of last year and kind of lost my game,” he said.

“I played terribly all last year and towards the end of the year started changing my swing. I seem to be coming back.

“I lost a lot of confidence but I’ve worked hard on my game, I’ve never hit so many balls as in the last year and it’s slowly coming back.”

American David Toms, who was three over in Thursday’s wind, produced the best round of the day with a sparkling eight under-par 63, while Justin Leonard recorded a hole-in-one on the par-three 13th.

Scores

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