Padraig Harrington’s interest in the Northern Trust Open is over after he carded a four over par 75 in his third roud at the Riviera Country club.
Harrington began well with a birdie on the opening hole but bogeys on seven and eight saw him reach the turn at one over before four bogeys on the last nine left him with an ugly looking scorecard.
South African Retief Goosen sits top of the leaderboard for the third consecutive day.
The 46-year-old, whose last title was five years ago, took a six-way share of the clubhouse lead after day one, before going out in front on his own on Friday.
He has now extended that to two shots going into the final day after birdies on the 16th and 17th holes saw him recover from hitting four bogeys on the back nine to card 69.
“This would be an awesome win,” Goosen told the PGA Tour website. “It’s been awhile since I had a chance to win. Yeah, this would ... feel like a U.S. Open, a third U.S. Open, for me winning this week. I’m going to give it my all tomorrow and fight hard and we’ll see what happens.”
Goosen said after day two it would be interesting to see how his nerves held out after suddenly finding himself in contention again and they were certainly tested in California.
The world number 220 looked to be cruising after picking up three shots on a faultless front nine, but after that he was pushed to the brink, hitting tree shots on the 12th and 13th holes for bogeys as well as dropping shots at 10 and 15.
“It wasn’t easy out there for me,” Goosen added. “Mentally, I had to work hard to try and stay positive and focused. But I’m still in the lead, so that’s a good place to be. Just try and play solid tomorrow and keep the putter warm and see what happens.”
Canadian Graham DeLaet is the closest contender to Goosen, two shots back on six under, while Spaniard Sergio Garcia is part of a four-strong group three shots off the pace.
Bae Sang-moon equalled the week's lowest score of 66 to join Garcia, while Mexican Carlos Ortiz and American JB Holmes complete the cluster.
Englishman Paul Casey dropped two shots further behind Goosen to sit five off the pace on three under after carding a disappointing par-71 round, which included a double-bogey on the eighth hole.
Meanwhile Peter Lawrie also struggled as he slumped to tied 31st place in the Hero Indian Open at Delhi Golf Club.
Lawrie was three under par heading into his final round, however six dropped shots and only two birdies meant he finished the tournament on one over par, eight shots off the lead.
Indian pair SSP Chawrasia and Anirban Lahiri went into a play-off for the championship on after a dramatic final round.
Chawrasia held a two-shot lead overnight but stumbled to a closing 76 to finish on seven under par alongside Lahiri, who won the Malaysian Open in Kuala Lumpur a fortnight ago.
Lahiri chipped in for par on the 17th in a closing 69 as a number of players squandered chances to either win the title outright or join the play-off.
Sweden's Joakim Lagergren, Thailand's Prayad Marksaeng, Sri Lanka's Mithun Perera and Australian Marcus Fraser all finished on six under, with Perera the only player to birdie the par-five 18th.
Marksaeng three-putted from long range for par on the last, while Fraser held the outright lead on nine under par after 12 holes, only to double bogey the 13th and drop another shot on the 16th.
Bangladesh’s Siddikur Rahman began the day two off the lead on 10 under but slumped to a 76 to finish five under par.
Elsewhere, women's world number one Lydia Ko became the youngest Australian Open winner on Sunday, prevailing in her final round duel with South Korean Amy Yang to add another title to her ever-growing list of achievements.
The 17-year-old from New Zealand shot a final round of two-under 71 for a two-shot victory over Yang at Royal Melbourne.
“I’ve always played well in Australia, so it’s always cool coming back here,” said Ko, who claimed the title at nine-under ahead of Yang who carded 72 on Sunday.
Thai teen Ariya Jutanugarn, who shared the overnight lead with Ko, finished third at four-under.
Ko dropped a shot on the eighth and Yang was hoping to eagle the 10th when lightning forced a 90-minute suspension of play and the Kiwi returned to regain her lead and benefited from her opponent’s late bogeys to walk away with the title.
“I think that break was really good for me,” Ko said.
“I had some lunch and got my stuff together there and I played much better after that.”