Sports

Finland's Ilonen birdies 18th to keep lead in Irish Open, by 1 over England's Willett

  • Finland's Mikko Ilonen on the eighth tee, during day three of the 2014 Irish Open at Fota Island Resort, County Cork, Ireland, Saturday, June 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Brian Lawless, PA Wire)    UNITED KINGDOM OUT   -   NO SALES    -   NO ARCHIVES

    Finland's Mikko Ilonen on the eighth tee, during day three of the 2014 Irish Open at Fota Island Resort, County Cork, Ireland, Saturday, June 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Brian Lawless, PA Wire) UNITED KINGDOM OUT - NO SALES - NO ARCHIVES  (The Associated Press)

  • Finland's Mikko Ilonen birdie putts on the 18th to stay in the lead on 12 under for the competition during day three of the 2014 Irish Open at Fota Island Resort, County Cork, Ireland, Saturday, June 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Brian Lawless, PA Wire)    UNITED KINGDOM OUT  NO SALES  NO ARCHIVES

    Finland's Mikko Ilonen birdie putts on the 18th to stay in the lead on 12 under for the competition during day three of the 2014 Irish Open at Fota Island Resort, County Cork, Ireland, Saturday, June 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Brian Lawless, PA Wire) UNITED KINGDOM OUT NO SALES NO ARCHIVES  (The Associated Press)

  • Ireland's Padraig Harrington watches his second shot on the second, during day three of the 2014 Irish Open at Fota Island Resort, County Cork, Ireland, Saturday, June 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Brian Lawless, PA Wire)    UNITED KINGDOM OUT   -   NO SALES   -   NO ARCHIVES

    Ireland's Padraig Harrington watches his second shot on the second, during day three of the 2014 Irish Open at Fota Island Resort, County Cork, Ireland, Saturday, June 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Brian Lawless, PA Wire) UNITED KINGDOM OUT - NO SALES - NO ARCHIVES  (The Associated Press)

Mikko Ilonen of Finland birdied the last hole to stay on top of the Irish Open leaderboard after three rounds on Saturday.

Ilonen, who has led from the outset, carded a 2-under-par 69 to move to a 12-under total at Fota Island.

The leader by two shots overnight, Ilonen will take a one-shot lead into the final round over Danny Willett of England, who eclipsed Ilonen's own course record by a shot with an 8-under 63 that also included a hole-in-one at the seventh.

One shot further back on 10 under was overwhelming crowd favorite Graeme McDowell, who birdied two of his closing three holes in a score of 69. He's not only targeting a first victory this year but also a maiden Irish Open victory.