Saturday, 20 July 2002
Iain Pyman could secure his fourth Challenge Tour title tomorrow after opening a three shot lead with a round left of the Golf Challenge at Brunstorf near Hamburg.

The 29 year old carded a second successive 66 for a 12 under par 132; three clear of Worksop's Denny Lucas and five ahead of the rest of the field.

Following the loss of a day's play on Thursday when heavy rain flooded the course, the tournament has been cut to 54 holes, which gives Pyman every chance of hanging on to his lead.

Pyman, whose last Challenge Tour victory was almost a year ago in the PGA of Austria Masters, didn't drop a shot as he ran in six birdies, four in a homeward 32.

Lucas, whose best Challenge Tour finish was a runner-up spot five years ago, had an eagle and five birdies in a 68 for 135, nine under par.

The rain of the first two days gave way to drier conditions with a light breeze, but it was still grey and cloudy and at times distinctly chilly.

Nevertheless, with preferred lies still in operation, there was a host of good scores with 38 players beating par.

Jean Pierre Cixous from France hung on to joint third place with a four-birdie 69 for 137 to be joined by Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell. A member of the victorious 2001 Walker Cup team, McDowell had an eagle and three birdies in a 68 and could mark his Challenge Tour debut with a high finish.

South African Martin Maritz is a shot further back in fifth place after a 67 that contained six birdies, while another Irishman, Peter Lawrie also went round in 67 for 139, five under par, for joint sixth spot with Michael Jonzon from Sweden, who returned 68.

The cut came at three over par 147 with 61 players surviving for the final round. Among them is Englishman Gary Birch Jnr, who staged a remarkable recovery with a best-of-the-day 65 following an opening 81.

He survived on 146, his 65 containing eight birdies and just one bogey.

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