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Brandt Snedeker holds one-stroke lead heading into final round

Brandt Snedeker capitalized on Hunter Mahan’s surprise withdrawl from the RBC Canadian Open on Saturday, firing a third round 9-under 63 to head into Sunday’s final round with a one-stroke lead.

After an early weather delay at Glen Abbey Golf Club softened conditions and halted play on Saturday, the field opened up as Mahan withdrew to fly home to Texas to be with his wife for the birth of their child.

A 1-time winner on tour this season, Snedeker took advantage of the Abbey’s generous conditions and the leader’s withdrawl, running off nine birdies in his bogey-free 63 that was highlighted by a 29 on his opening nine.

Realizing only on the seventh hole that Mahan had withdrawn, the 2012 FedExCup champion capitalized on his chance to vault up the leaderboard.

“I knew I had a chance if I could keep the momentum going after the first six holes and I could really ride it out and do something special today,” Snedeker said following his round.

Snedeker also stated he feels comfortable sleeping on the lead, as his last two victories on tour have come from ahead.

“I know how to handle it and I know what to expect tomorrow especially on a golf course like this,” he said. “I’m not too concerned about my number right now, I know what I have to do tomorrow.”

As a 2-time runner-up already this season, David Lingmerth of Sweden, trails Mahan by a single stroke after making an eagle on the par-5 18th to card a third round 7-under 65. Sitting only two strokes behind in a tie for third are also, Matt Kuchar and Jason Bohn.

Leading the charge for the Canadians was David Hearn of Brantford, Ont., who carded a 4-under 68 to currently sit in a tie for 39th at 5-under-par. Mike Weir of Bright’s Grove, Ont., only trails Hearn by two at 3-under, while Merritt, B.C., native, Roger Sloan, sits in a tie for 62nd at 2-under par.

Before play began on Saturday, Ottawa’s Brad Fritsch who was sitting at 2-under for the tournament, was forced to withdraw due to back pain.

The following are third round scores for the three remaining Canadians in the 2013 RBC Canadian Open field.

T39 – David Hearn, Brantford, Ont., 70-73-68, (-5)

T55 – Mike Weir, Bright’s Grove, Ont., 73-67-73 (-3)

T62 – Roger Sloan, Merritt, B.C., 71-71-72 (-2)

WD – Brad Fritsch, Ottawa, Ont.