Day 3 – As it happenedon December 7, 2013
10:10 – Here we go for day three then folks! Dawie van der Walt gets us going with a beauty down the middle. All credit to Peter Senior, who showed some decent fight yesterday to follow an opening round 80 up with a 68. Tugs his drive into the left rough though.
10:32 – Nice birdie from Thaworn Wiratchant at the first – rolls in a 12 footer to get back to two over par.
10:56 – Francesco Molinari joins the day-three birdie club on the first, while Wiratchant has a chance to make it two in two. Not so for American Gary Woodland though, as he drops two in his first two holes.
11:03 – Ernie! He gets the crowd going with a fine birdie at the second despite finding the sand with his tee shot. He may be out of contention, but let’s hope he can put on an exhibition today.
11:35 – Well, so much for an Ernie charge. The Big Easy racks up the ugliest of triple bogeys at the third hole, before making a double bogey at the par-three fourth. What a pity!
11:50 – Well, after one of the world’s longest introductions from starter Dale Hayes (understandable given his list of achievements in 2013), Henrik Stenson gets his third round underway. Ryan Moore and leader Jamie Donaldson follow suit, and it looks as though we’re in for a mouth-watering four and a half hours of golf here.
11:59 – And Charl Schwartzel gets things moving in the right direction with a birdie at the second hole. He’s up to seven under, four behind Donaldson. The final trio all secure their pars at the opening hole.
12:12 – Thomas Bjorn joins the party at eight under with an almost mandatory birdie at the second hole. A useful one indeed, with none of the final three-ball looking likely to follow suit, so his share of second place should last.
12:22 – Wonderful stuff from Louis Oosthuizen this morning, as he rolls in a 15 footer at the sixth hole for his third birdie of the day. He’s up to four under, and looking very solid.
12:39 – First blood to Stenson in the final group then, as he makes a cracking birdie at the third. Finds some rough on the left with his drive, but hits a superb recovery to 15 feet and drains the putt. Shivers down the spine yet Jamie?
12:54 – Well, I guess not then. Jamie hits back with a wonderful birdie of his own at the par-three fourth, and his three-shot lead is restored. Pars all round for his colleagues. Can he keep this up?
13:04 – The sixth hole offers up birdie threes to both Schwartzel and Bjorn, moving them to eight and nine under respectively, and Bjorn shares second place with Stenson.
13:14 – It’s raining birdies all of a sudden! The second-place group at nine under suddenly has two more members as Moore and Schwartzel birdie the fifth and sixth holes respectively. But it’s that man Donaldson up to his tricks again, as he puts down another red number on his card after holing a monster at the fifth. Four clear he is now, on 13 under.
13:53 – Some great golf being played out here by the chasing pack. Moore birdies the sixth and the eighth to get it to 11 under, Bjorn gets to 10 under courtesy of a three at the eighth. But it is Thongchai Jaidee who makes the greatest shakes with four birdies in a row from the seventh. Five under for his round, and he joins the Dane at 10 under.
14:14 – Disaster strikes for Henrik at the ninth hole, as he deposits two balls in the drink. Almost holes out his chip, but that’s a devastating double bogey and he plunders all the way back to seven under. Meanwhile Donaldson saves par there despite also finding the water. He leads by three from Moore, who also makes par.
14:16 – Thomas you peach! He chips in for eagle at the 10th to get to 12 under, and is now just one behind the Welshman. This thing has really come alive in the last hour or so.
14:30 – Stenson narrowly misses out on an eagle at the 10th, but it will somewhat numb the pain of the double bogey at the ninth. Jamie makes one too though, and he’s up to 14 under. But Bjorn makes birdie up ahead on the 11th, keeping the lead down to one.
14:44 – A pair of darts have just been thrown by Moore and Donaldson here at 11. The American hits it to three feet, then Donaldson almost holes it. Incredible stuff, 15 under and a two-stroke lead.
14:54 – Too much going on here to keep track! Garcia chips in for eagle to get to nine under, but Henrik shows some true class as a birdie at 12 gets him back to nine under too. That cancels out the double at the ninth, and he isn’t out of it just yet.
15:10 – My goodness, heart-stopping golf being played here! Stenson’s approach at the 13th finishes five feet from the pin, and Moore pops his inside that. A pair of birdies, and some more pressure on Donaldson, who makes a decent up and down to save par. Meanwhile, a sixth birdie of the day for Jaidee, who’s up to 11 under.
15:22 – Great save from Thomas Bjorn at the 14th. He miscues his third, and finds the love-grass. Without any options, he elects to replay the shot with a penalty, and ups and downs to save bogey. It leaves Moore in sole possession of second place at 13 under. Up ahead, Sergio Garcia holes a gem at the 16th to sneak up to 10 under.
15:34 – A three-putt par from Stenson at the 14th, he’ll be disappointed with that, and he remains at 10 under. Donaldson makes a fine birdie, 16 under, and it’s a three-stroke ball game once again.
15:50 – Sensational Jamie, absolutely sensational! Rolls home a 30 feet putt for birdie at 15, and he’s running away with things now as he leads by four from Moore, whose birdie effort there stays agonisingly up.
15:56 – Sergio you champion! The Spaniard buries his chip to a standing ovation at the 18th hole. That completes a back nine of 31, a third round of 66 and a total of 11 under par. He probably wishes he could keep playing today!
16:20 – Donaldson shows us his human side at last at the 17th! In fact, he does really well to salvage a bogey after twice flirting with the water. He’s back to 16 under, while Henrik puts his hat back into the ring with a birdie. Five adrift now the Swede is.
16:22 – Great closing birdie for Bjorn to finish with a 67. He’s 13 under, and he’ll now be in the final three ball tomorrow it seems.
16:37 – Today’s final three-ball end the day’s proceedings with a trio of pars, and it means Donaldson will start tomorrow with a three-shot lead over Bjorn and Moore. Stenson, Jaidee and Garcia are all still in this one too though at 11 under. Tune in tomorrow folks!