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Hanson hoping to hold off McIlroy in Shanghai showdown

Peter Hanson, left, held a one-shot over playing partner Rory McIlroy after the third round at Lake Malaren Golf Club on Saturday.

Story highlights

  • Ryder Cup winner Peter Hanson retains lead after third round of BMW Masters in China
  • Swede's advantage over Europe teammate Rory McIlroy is halved to one stroke
  • World No. 1 McIlroy is seeking to win both European and U.S. money lists in 2012
  • On Monday he will play an exhibition against second-ranked Tiger Woods

World No. 1 Rory McIlroy faces a final-day showdown with Ryder Cup teammate Peter Hanson as he seeks to defend his BMW Masters title and continue his bid to win both the European and U.S. PGA Tour money lists for 2012.

The Northern Irishman went in Saturday's third round two shots behind the Swede, but managed to cut that deficit in half as they carded 69 and 70 respectively at Lake Malaren Golf Club in Shanghai.

"I'm one behind and in a great position," said the 23-year-old McIlroy, who could have ended the day alongside Hanson on 16 under overall if not for a par putt that lipped out at the 17th hole.

He won the tournament in its inaugural staging last year, before it was sanctioned by the European Tour. Then he was a one-time major champion and took home the $2 million first prize.

This year he has added the PGA Championship to his CV plus the U.S. money list title -- and clinching the $1.16 million prize on Sunday will put him well clear in the Race To Dubai.

"I'll try to go out and shoot the best score possible and see what happens," said McIlroy.

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"As long as you're up there near the lead, it's a good position to be in. Whether I'm one ahead or one behind or level, I can go out there tomorrow and give it my all and hopefully that's good enough."

Hanson is seeking his sixth European Tour title and his second this year following September's victory at the KLM Open in the Netherlands. It set him up for the Ryder Cup at Medinah but he was one of only three European team players not to win on the final day.

"It's great to play with Rory. Every time you get the chance to play against the world No. 1 it's a fantastic thing to do," the 35-year-old told the European Tour website.

"Hopefully I can stay ahead of him but I think it's going to be a tough one tomorrow and I need to play a little bit better than I did today. If I can get it back to the first two rounds I think I've got a good chance."

South Africa's George Coetzee was third, two shots behind McIlroy after a 66, while six players were tied for fourth on 11-under 205.

Among them were Justin Rose -- McIlroy's closest challenger in the Race To Dubai standings -- and former world No. 1 Luke Donald, who won both money lists last year.

Ryder Cup winners Graeme McDowell, Martin Kaymer and Nicolas Colsaerts were in a group tied for 10th on 206, with teammate Ian Poulter was another shot back.

Colsaerts was up with the leaders but two late double-bogeys left the Belgian on 69.

Meanwhile, world No. 2 Tiger Woods is battling for form ahead of Monday's exhibition showdown with McIlroy, which will also be played in China.

The American made a strong start to the CIMB Classic in Malaysia, but his 69 on Saturday left him tied for 10th and five shots off the lead going into Sunday's final round.

"The back nine I made too many mistakes. I made too many bad decisions and bad swings," Woods said.

"I gotta shoot a low one and hope for the best. I need to shoot something really low. That might not even do it."

Compatriot Bo van Pelt fired nine-under 62 to share top spot with Robert Garrigus in the PGA Tour-sanctioned event, which offers a $1.3 million first prize.

Another America, Chris Kirk, was a shot back in third after carding 63.