DUBLIN, Ohio ­— Justin Thomas kept another clean card at Muirfield Village and carded a 6-under 66 to turn a three-shot deficit into a two-shot lead Saturday in the Workday Charity Open.

Thomas first had to run off a string of birdies to stay within range of Collin Morikawa. And when Morikawa began to fade with three bogeys in a four-hole stretch around the turn, Thomas converted on the par 5s and played wisely on the short par-4 14th for another birdie.

The final group is a glimpse of golf’s next generation.

Thomas is the proven star, already a major champion and former world No. 1 at age 27 as he goes after his third victory this season and the 13th victory of his career.

Viktor Hovland and Morikawa had just left college at this time last year.

Hovland, the former U.S. Amateur champion from Norway, had eight birdies in his round of 66 and was two shots behind. Morikawa birdied the 18th for a 72 and was three behind.

Thomas figures it won’t be the first time they all play together.

“It’ll be fun to hang with those guys tomorrow, but at the end of the day, I’m worried about myself and trying to win a golf tournament and have a good round,” he said.

Thomas was at 16-under 200. The final round will start early because of heavy storms in the forecast Sunday afternoon, with threesomes starting on both the first and 10th tees.

Morikawa had the lead for 31 straight holes, dating to the 15th hole in the opening round, until missing the ninth green with a short iron, hitting a wild tee shot on the 10th that led to bogey, and sending his tee shot on the par-3 12th well over the green in such a bad spot that even making bogey was hard work.

“I put myself in spots you couldn’t put yourself in,” Morikawa said. “Couldn’t really figure out wind directions, how much to adjust. But whole new day tomorrow, and kind of glad I fought it out through even par got myself three back. So that can change really quickly tomorrow.”

Hovland, who won the Puerto Rico Open this year, moved into contention quickly by opening with a pair of birdies and making birdie on all the par 5s. He also took on the 14th hole, where the tees have been moved up for this tournament to play at 310 yards – reachable from the tee, but with bunkers left and water to the right.

Hovland hit his tee shot to 30 feet for a two-putt birdie.

Thomas tried to drive the green with a 3-wood Friday and had to work for his par. With the wind slightly at his back, he opted for a 6-iron off the tee and a short iron into the green. That led to a 10-foot birdie putt.

Morikawa went left of the bunkers off the tee and no chance to get it close, with the green running away from him.

Hovland was thrilled to be in this position, especially with how his week started. He was 3 over through 10 holes on Thursday but finished with six birdies over his last eight holes. He followed with rounds of 67-66.

The spotlight will be on youth – Thomas is the veteran in this group – with a few others on the fringe of contention.

Sam Burns, a 23-year-old from LSU, had a 70 and joined Kevin Streelman (71) five shots back at 11-under 205. Ian Poulter, back at Muirfield Village for the first time since 2009 because of the reconfigured schedule, had a 69 and was six shots behind, along with Rory Sabbatini, who also shot 69.

“It’s going to have to be a low one tomorrow,” Poulter said.

EUROPEAN TOUR: Nicolai von Dellingshausen and Marc Warren shared the lead after a rain-drenched third round of the Austrian Open, as Miguel Angel Jimenez’s hopes of a record-breaking victory deteriorated.

With rounds of 2-under 70, Von Dellingshausen and Warren moved to 11 under overall – a shot clear of Sebastian Garcia Rodriguez (69), Connor Syme (69) and Darius van Driel (70).

Jimenez, 56, led by two strokes after two rounds, putting himself in position to break his own record as the oldest winner of a European Tour event. But he shot a 77 to drop to a tie for 12th place, five shots off the lead.

AMERICAN CENTURY CHAMPIONSHIP: Former tennis player Mardy Fish birdied the final five holes to take a three-point lead over former Buffalo Bills defensive tackle Kyle Williams in the celebrity tournament in Stateline, Nevada.

Fish had a 37-point round under the modified Stableford scoring system. He opened with a bogey, then made 10 birdies in a 9-under 63 to push his two-day points total to 55.

Williams is trying to become the first lineman to win the event. He had a 27-point day, making an eagle, five birdies and six bogeys in a 71.

Former pitcher John Smoltz was third at 37 points. Two-time defending champion and former quarterback Tony Romo was tied for fourth at 36 with former NBA star Dell Curry and former Red Sox pitcher Derek Lowe.

Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry, Dell’s son, was 11th with 30 points.

Charles Barkley was 70th in the 71-player field with minus-50 points. Former running back Eddie George was three points behind Barkley.

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