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Published: 11:33 | 10/4/16

McIlroy confident of catching Spieth

Leader's late stumble opens door

Rory McIlroy believes he can win if he goes on the attack in the final round after Jordan Spieth's late stumble in round three.

The defending champion was close to taking a stranglehold of the tournament after he birdied 12, 14 and 15th to move to five under par.

However, three dropped shots in his last two holes drew the field back to him and the 22-year-old will only carry a one-shot lead over compatriot Smylie Kaufman into Sunday.

McIlroy struggled to a five-over 77 to drop to +2 on a day when the blustery conditions saw only five players shoot under par but he feels Spieth's late wobble has brought him back into contention.

"I think it's winnable from here. If Jordan hadn't had that finish then I would probably say no," he said.

"But the guys on two and three over like myself feel we have a chance now.

"I just have to make sure that I get off to a fast start, put some red numbers on the board and make a bit of noise to put a bit of pressure on the guys playing behind me.

"I'm only five back and I can't believe I am standing here saying that because I was eight behind standing on the 17th tee. I need to regroup and stay positive and go out and attack."

Hideki Matsuyama and Bernhard Langer sit just two strokes off the pace with late dropped shots from both meaning they will play the final round together and they will be confident of walking off wearing the Green Jacket.

Matsuyama is aiming to become the first Japanese player to win a major while 58-year-old Langer hopes to become the oldest player to win one of the game's biggest prizes, Jack Nicklaus' win at Augusta aged 46 the current oldest.

World number one Jason Day sits just three shots behind Spieth after an impressive 71 and he will play on the final day with Dustin Johnson who remains in the mix after a level par 72.

Masters third-round leaderboard (US unless stated)

-3 J Spieth; -2 S Kaufman; -1 B Langer (Ger), H Matsuyama (Jpn); Level J Day (Aus), D Johnson, D Willett (Eng)

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