James Busby maintained his one stroke lead with a round of 67 to move to nine under par ahead of the final round of The PartyPoker.com International Open at Fairmont St Andrews on the PGA EuroPro Tour.
Busby (The Shropshire – pictured) held the overnight lead after opening the tournament with a round of 66 on Wednesday and turned in a faultless round with two birdies on the front nine followed by another on the 15th. He will tee off just before lunchtime with Daniel Brooks (Mill Hill) who began on the back nine and was level through the turn, before picking up four birdies in his last five holes to record his second 68 of the event to sit pretty on eight under par.
Wallace Booth jumped into contention thanks to a fantastic start with four birdies in his first four holes after starting the day one under. He dropped a shot at the sixth but further birdies at the seventh, 11th and 12th to see the Scottish Walker Cup player card a brilliant 66 to move to seven under for the tournament. A birdie at 18 sees Lloyd Saltman (Aegon) join fellow Scotsman on seven under, the sixth birdie of his round of 69 following an opening round of 68.
There’s a three shot gap from the duo tied in third to the pair in fifth at four under, with Craig Lee and Nicky Harris (Whitefield GC) the duo five shots behind Busby. Lee had to battle hard for his one under round of 71, starting with two bogeys and kicking off his back nine double bogey-bogey, but he managed six birdies in all with two in his last two holes to be in the mix on the final day. Harris started with a double bogey but he rallied with four birdies and an eagle to record back-to-back rounds of 70.
Jack Doherty (North Gailes) matched Booth’s round of 66 thanks to six unanswered birdies to lead a group of four players on three under. Former Ryder Cup winner Ronan Rafferty began the day at one under but started on the back nine and went through the turn two over for the day – but rolled back the years with four birdies in five holes to card a round of 70. Nick McCarthy (Moortown) and Michael Collins (Mallow Golf Range) are the other two players who join Doherty and Rafferty thanks to rounds of 71 and 72 respectively.
Tom Haylock (Ground Construction Ltd) sits in second place on the Order of Merit but was unable to build on his four under par opening round, carding a 74 to drop to two under – with Daniel Gaunt (Burhill GC) matching him round-for-round and joining him in joint 11th place.
Fifty players made the cut at three over and the final round of The PartyPoker.com International Open at Fairmont St Andrews gets underway at 8.30am with the final pairing of Busby and Brooks teeing-off at 11.50am. The full Leaderboard and live scoring from the final round is available via the Score Updates link on the homepage.
Date Posted: 08/10/09, 8pm