McIlroy takes Irish Open lead on lightning-delayed 3rd day

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy putts on the 2nd green during day three of the Irish Open at The K Club, County Kildare. Ireland. Saturday May 21, 2016. (Brian Lawless /PA via AP) UNITED KINGDOM OUT - NO SALES - NO ARCHIVES
Brian Lawless/AP

STRAFFAN, Ireland (AP) Rory McIlroy could be on the cusp of his first Irish Open victory if the heavens permit him to finish.

Lightning storms bedeviled Saturday's third round at the K Club. Tournament organizers suspended play for the night with McIlroy ready to tee off the 16th hole holding a three-stroke lead over Masters champion Danny Willett.

McIlroy protested to officials amid bucketing rain that fading light meant he couldn't see the course properly.

McIlroy, 9 under for the tournament, has never won the Irish Open and failed for the past three years to make the cut. He was the only player Saturday not to drop a single shot.

Willett started the day one shot ahead of McIlroy, but carded bogeys in three of his first seven holes to fall into second.