Saturday, 02 November 2013
Shiv Kapur  (Getty Images)
Shiv Kapur (Getty Images)
Shiv Kapur is on course for a second European Challenge Tour title of the season and a return to The European Tour after the Indian roared into a four shot lead in a thrilling third day at the Dubai Festival City Challenge Tour Grand Final hosted by Al Badia Golf Club.

Incredibly, the 31 year old was four shots off the lead stepping on to the eighth tee after two early bogeys left him a couple over for the day at the European Challenge Tour’s season finale, but an eagle at the easy par five on Saturday afternoon changed everything.

At the same time playing partner and second round leader, Andrea Pavan, carded a costly double bogey which meant Kapur drew level and the tournament was suddenly turned on its head.

Suddenly, the momentum was with Kapur and he took full advantage, carding three birdies on the way back including one at the last to sign for a five under par 67 and move four clear of the field on 14 under par.

The New Delhi man, however, knows there is no room for error as Dutchman Wil Besseling is in second place knowing only a win will be enough to secure his path to The European Tour - making for what is sure to be an enthralling finale at the stunning Al Badia Golf Club by InterContinental.

“Experience today was key today,” said Kapur, who is on course for bookend victories in the 2013 Challenge Tour season, having won the season-opener on home soil. “I think the thing I have managed to do well recently is be patient. I haven’t started too well in many rounds but I have managed to stay patient and shoot low numbers.

“I had a rocky start to say the least today and had a couple of bad breaks early on. I was a couple over and just trying to fight back and get myself back into the tournament but my long eagle putt on eight gave me the boost I needed for the rest of the round.

“I wasn’t paying too much attention to what the other guys were doing. I had my own goals in mind to shoot a solid round of golf. When I made that eagle I felt, ‘OK I’m back to double-digits under par and I can kick on from here’.

“I would like to reverse it tomorrow and hopefully get off to a fast start and then I can be patient on the back nine.”

While a top three finish at this week’s season finale would probably be enough to seal an eighth season in the top tier for Kapur, he is keen to just focus on the golf tournament tomorrow and not be distracted by any permutations in the Rankings.

“I think if you concentrate on trying to win the golf tournament, everything else will take care of itself,” he said. “That was my goal at the start of the tournament, just try and win or be in contention and look at permutations at the end of it. If I can go out and take care of business tomorrow those things will take care of themselves.

“At the end of the day you play sport to be under the gun. It’s not a lot of fun when there is no pressure out there so when the pressure is on and you hole the putts you need to it’s a lot more satisfying.”

Besseling, who carded five back-nine birdies on the way to a four under par 68, which moved him to ten under par, is aware of the job in hand and is relishing the opportunity to chase down the lead.

“I holed a lot of putts today so that was nice,” said the 27 year old. “I'm very happy with the round, especially having not felt well this morning but on the back nine I just sank a few putts so that really got me into it for tomorrow and I'm really happy about that.

“I'm really looking forward to tomorrow. I haven’t played in the last group in a long time so I'm going to enjoy it and try to do the same as I have done in the last few days and see if that is enough.”

Scotsmen Andrew McArthur (68) and Jamie McLeary (69) are also in close attendance with everything to gain and nothing to lose as they both require a big result this week if they are to earn promotion to The European Tour. 

They sit in tied third place on nine under alongside José-Filipe Lima (71), who is virtually guaranteed a European Tour card having begun the week in seventh position, and Rankings leader Pavan, who fell to a three over par 75.

Get Adobe Flash player

Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1KAPUR, ShivIND18-16
T2MCLEARY, JamieSCO18-12
T2LIMA, José-FilipePOR18-12
T4DAVIES, RhysWAL18-11
T4PAVAN, AndreaITA18-11
T6DUBOIS, EdouardFRA18-10
R2D Fantasy

Media Centre

Official Partner

Official Suppliers

This website is © The PGA European Tour 1997 - 2014. PGA European Tour, Wentworth Drive, Virginia Water, Surrey, GU25 4LX. Registered in England No. 1867610.
All rights reserved. No reproduction, distribution or transmission of any information, part or parts of this website by any means whatsoever is permitted without the prior written permission of the PGA European Tour.