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Michael Kim tees off on the ninth hole during the third round of the John Deere Classic golf tournament at TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Ill., on Saturday, July 14.Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports via Reuters

American Michael Kim sparked into life late on his back nine to build a five-stroke lead after the third round of a marathon day at the John Deere Classic on Saturday.

Celebrating his 25th birthday, Kim finished his third round with four straight birdies to sign for a seven-under-par 64 that put him on an imposing 22-under for the tournament.

Kim endured a long day at TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Illinois, arriving at the course early to finish his second round before taking a nap during a two-and-a-half hour weather delay, then returning to the course to add three birdies and a bogey.

Play was again suspended with Kim on the 14th hole of his third round but he returned to complete a stellar day and remain on course for a first PGA Tour victory.

“I’m pretty used to rain delays from playing on the (second tier) Tour,” Kim told reporters.

“This year has been probably a record of so little rain delays. I’m comfortable going in and going out -- I felt good. I can just relax in the morning, take it easy. I’m looking forward to tomorrow.”

Fellow American Bronson Burgoon is his closest challenger at 17-under after completing a five-under-par 66 that included an eagle on the par-five second hole and three straight birdies to close his round.

“I don’t know how I finished the way I did,” said Burgoon, who had to complete the last three holes of his second round early on Saturday morning.

“I warmed up four times today. It was a grind out there. Obviously, Michael is playing really well. I was playing pretty good myself. So, I’ll go get some rest and looking forward to tomorrow.”

Australian Matt Jones (16-under) and American Harold Varner III (15-under) also recorded rounds of 66 to stay in contention.

Jones, 38, has one PGA Tour victory, the 2014 Shell Houston Open, while the 27-year-old Varner is flirting with a first ever PGA Tour win for the second consecutive week after finishing tied for fifth at Greenbrier.

Argentinean Andres Romero shot a 64 and is one of two players at 14-under.

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