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Friday, 19 March 2010

Rafael Cabrera Bello still tops the leaderboard at the Credit Suisse Challenge, but the young Spaniard’s advantage has been cut to two strokes after England’s Gary Lockerbie carded a round of 65.  

Cabrera Bello is on course to capture his second Challenge Tour title after adding a 68 to rounds of 67 and 64 at Wylihof Golf Club in Luterbach, Switzerland, to finish on 20 under par.

The young Spaniard is keen to continue his country’s remarkable sporting summer, and is also eager to make it a family double with his sister Emma well placed at the Ladies Irish Open on the Ladies European Tour.

He said: “I enjoy being in the last group and playing with pressure – it’s the reason we play golf. It would be great if I could finish the job, and hopefully my sister also does well. I will be phoning her later to wish her luck.”

Lockerbie has his sights set on the leader and a maiden Challenge Tour success after playing himself firmly into contention with the joint lowest round of the day.

Six birdies and an eagle saw the Penrith man finish day three on 18 under par, two shots clear of Spain’s Santiago Luna in third place.

Lockerbie has two runner-up finishes to his name but is yet to taste victory, and the 25 year old is determined to make amends for a season which by his own admission has stuttered.

He said: “I haven’t played very well at this year, but it’s starting to come together nicely now. With a bit of lucky I’ll shoot low again tomorrow, and take the trophy home in my luggage with me. It’d be great to get that first win on the board. My mates Simon Robinson and Andrew McArthur have both already won this year, so I’ll have to get one under my belt to stop them carping. In the long run the aim is obviously to get back onto The European Tour, because it’s such a great lifestyle.”

Richard Bland shares fourth place with Italy’s Lorenzo Gagli on 15 under par after the Englishman shot a round of 69.

Leading the home challenge is Switzerland’s Julien Clément, whose round of 69 moved him to 14 under par alongside Wales’ David Park and Sweden’s Joel Sjoholm.

Clément said: “I started really well, and was three under for the day after just five holes – and it might’ve been even better had I not missed a short eagle putt on the fourth hole. But a bad drive on the sixth hole cost me a bogey, and that slowed me down a little. But I was still pretty pleased with my round.

“It was great to see so many spectators today, and it was nice to have the TV cameras following me. All the youngsters behaved themselves really well, and now I’m looking forward to a great final day.”

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Tournament Leaderboard

PosPlayer NameNatHolePar
1CABRERA-BELLO, RafaelESP18-25
2LOCKERBIE, GaryENG18-23
T3GAGLI, LorenzoITA18-19
T3LUNA, SantiagoESP18-19
T5CLÉMENT, JulienSUI18-18
T5GANE, ChrisENG18-18
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