Ogilvy hits lead to set up Open show­down with Spi­eth

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

For­mer US Open cham­pion Ge­off Ogilvy fired an eight-un­der-par 64 to move into the out­right lead at the Australian Open and set up a final round show­down with two-time ma­jor win­ner Jor­dan Spi­eth yes­ter­day.

Ogilvy, 39, was 11-un­der-par and two shots ahead of Amer­i­can Spi­eth, fel­low Australian Aaron Bad­de­ley and New Zealand’s Ryan Fox with one round re­main­ing at the Royal Syd­ney Golf Club.

Vet­eran Australian Rod Pam­pling was one shot fur­ther back af­ter a third round 70 while world No.7 Adam Scott carded a tu­mul­tuous 71. Scott joined fel­low Aus­tralians Jake Hig­gin­bot­tom, Ja­son Scrivener, Lu­cas Her­bert and James Nit­ties in a five-way tie for sixth at seven-un­der.

Ogilvy be­gan the day six shots be­hind overnight leader Nit­ties and pro­duced six front-nine birdies-in­clud­ing four in a row-to join the lead half­way through his round.

The 2010 Australian Open cham­pion con­sol­i­dated with birdies at the par-five 16th and par-four 18th for a tour­na­ment-low round. “That was kind of an easy 64 if there is such a thing,” Ogilvy said.

“I didn’t re­ally see 64 on the first tee, but af­ter go­ing out so well on the front nine, I kind of started see­ing a score like that. “When you’ve been see­ing putts hit the edge and not go in for a few months, or years, you feel a lot bet­ter when they ac­tu­ally lip in in­stead of lip out.”

For­mer world No. 1 Spi­eth be­gan the day at five-un­der and re­cov­ered from a slow start with five birdies from the sixth to the 14th to post 68 and his best round of the tour­na­ment.

“Af­ter be­ing one over through the first five holes and re­ally be­ing all over the golf course, I re­ally could have been three or four over at that point and turned it around into a four-un­der round, so I’m very pleased with be­ing at nine un­der,” Spi­eth said.

The 2014 Australian Open cham­pion needed 25 putts yes­ter­day and said he feels con­fi­dent on the greens af­ter lament­ing poor putting on the first two days. “I’m just go­ing to be more ag­gres­sive on the greens to­mor­row now that I feel more com­fort­able,” he said.

“I feel like my best golf is yet to come out and, there­fore I feel con­fi­dent about where things are.”

Bad­de­ley, 35, be­gan the third round with back-to-back birdies on his way to a five-un­der 67 and will play along­side Ogilvy in Sun­day’s final pair­ing.

The 35-year-old is chas­ing a third Australian Open ti­tle, 17 years af­ter his win as an 18-year-old am­a­teur at Royal Syd­ney in 1999. “You have so many good mem­o­ries here, lots of good shots, putts made, so it def­i­nitely helps when you go back to a course that you’ve played well at and have got such good mem­o­ries at like here,” Bad­de­ley said. “It would be pretty cool to win here to­mor­row, I mean, 17 years later, that would be su­per spe­cial.”

Scott mixed four birdies with three bo­geys and was up­beat af­ter his 71 de­spite miss­ing a short birdie putt on the final green.—AFP

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