US Open: One bad shot proves costly for Ian Poulter at Merion

Last Updated: 16/06/13 7:28am

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Sky Bet

Ian Poulter joked that he needed five minutes in a padded cell after his US Open challenge faltered down the stretch in the third round.

The Englishman bogeyed two of the final three holes as he completed a second-round 71 early on Saturday morning to slip four shots off the lead.

He dropped to three over after a mistake at the third in his third round, but he clawed his way back into contention with birdies at the sixth and eighth holes.

But he undid his good work with a pull-hook out of bounds from the tee at 15 and ran up a double-bogey, and he dropped shots at the 16th and 18th for the second time in the day.

His 73 leaves him six shots behind leader Phil Mickelson, and he was annoyed that his round had suffered due to a single poor swing.

"I hit one poor shot all day; that was that tee shot on 15," he said. "I hit the same club, the second time around hit it in the middle of the fairway, hit it to 12 feet, easy double bogey."

Meanwhile, Lee Westwood raced into the top 20 as he staged a remarbale finish to his third round.

Westwood, who started at the 11th, was three over for the day and 10 over for the tournament with just four holes of his round remaining.

But he surged back up the leaderboard with birdies at all four of his closing holes to card a 69, a score matched by Ryder Cup team-mate Paul Lawrie as both finished on six over.

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