Browne leads Greater Gwinnett, but Langer close behind

After Olin Browne came in with 8-under 64 Saturday for the Greater Gwinnett Championship lead, he kept an eye on Bernhard Langer. It was tough to relax with the German still out on the course, and Langer showed why. He matched Browne’s 64, a tournament record, and will start the final round of the Champions Tour event only one shot behind.

Langer made a 30-foot eagle putt on No. 18 for his 64 – just as Browne predicted as he watched from the sidelines at TPC Sugarloaf in Duluth, Ga.

“He is a public peril,” Browne said, referring to Langer’s sometimes dominant play.

“That’s what you expect out of him,” Browne said. “It’s no accident. He didn’t win two Masters by accident. … He’s our marquee guy out here and he shows up every single week and there’s one thing that he cares about doing and that’s winning the tournament.”

Langer has won 23 times on the Champions Tour, and if he wins his 24th this week, he’ll be part of a four-way tie in the all-time win category. Hale Irwin leads with 45 victories on the 50-and-over tour.

Players had to finish the first round on Saturday morning because Friday’s round was wiped out by rain. More rain and potential thunderstorms are in the forecast for Sunday, which means Browne, at 12 under for the tournament, could have the advantage.

“You would rather be one in front than one behind sitting on a chair hoping to get to play,” Browne said.

“I played today like we weren’t going to get to play tomorrow. … Hopefully, we do get to play tomorrow. I mean, it’s going to mean a lot more tomorrow if I go out there and hold the lead.”

Browne’s only senior-tour win was the 2011 U.S. Senior Open.

Rocco Mediate, who lost the lead with a double bogey on No. 11, was third at 9 under after a 67.

Mediate led before an errant tee shot on the par-3 11th led to a double bogey. While preparing for the tee shot, Mediate made a late change to a 4-iron and then mishit his shot into a lake, not even close to the green.

“I probably quit on it a little bit obviously thinking it might be too much,” Mediate said of his club selection.

Information from the Associated Press used in this report

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