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Saturday, 11 June 2016
Zander Lombard teeing off during the third round  (Getty Images)
Zander Lombard teeing off during the third round (Getty Images)

Zander Lombard will take a narrow one-shot lead into the final round of the Lyoness Open powered by Sporthilfe Cashback Card after firing a 68 on Saturday.

The South African heads into Sunday's fourth round on 11 under par after mixing seven birdies with a triple bogey - the only blemish in an otherwise perfect round.

China's Ashun Wu is a shot behind the 21 year old on ten under, with Adrian Otaegui and Grégory Bourdy another stroke back.

Beginning the day in a share of the lead with Bourdy on seven under par, Lombard took advantage of low scoring conditions at Diamond Country Club to notch four birdies in his first seven holes and take the outright lead.

But after carding a disappointing seven at the par-four ninth, he saw his three shot lead over nearest challenger Wu disappear.

Lombard slipped down to second following a birdie from Wu but he bounced back in style, making gains at the 11th and 14th to share the lead once again.

And after tapping in his seven-foot birdie putt at the 17th, Lombard stood alone at the top of the leaderboard on 11 under.

After his round, Lombard said: “It’s always a great position to be in to really compete and I’m looking forward to it a lot, so I’m going to give it my best and try to stick to what I’m doing, it seems to be working so far.

“It was a bit of a brain burp at the ninth to be honest, because it was never a driver for me all week - my gameplay there was a two-iron – but my confidence got to me and I just wanted to hit a little cut off the left bunker and I came out of it a little.

"It wasn’t that bad of a shot but there’s no margin for error on that tee shot so I paid the price but at least I kept my cool around the turn and steadied the ship with a good par.

"The birdie at 11 was another good switch to get my momentum going in the right direction - Zander Lombard

“I had some big birdies out there which I needed but obviously you’re always going to hit bad shots in this game and unlucky that it was a tough hole.”

Wu started the day four shots behind the co-leaders but notched four birdies before the turn to climb up the leaderboard.

The 30 year old made the perfect start to the back nine, rolling in his six foot birdie putt at the tenth to get to eight under, before picking up further shots at the 13th and 14th to move to ten under.

Wu was pleased with his performance on Saturday. He said: “I played really good today and I’m feeling good right now. The weather was nice to us too, the conditions on this course are great.

“I made a lot of birdies today and no bogeys so I’m getting a really good feeling at the moment.

“I just need to keep going now, don’t slow down and keep making birdies.”

Despite opening his third round with a birdie, Bourdy reached the turn in 37 after carding double bogeys at the second and eighth holes, as well as birdies at the fourth and seventh.

But the Frenchman picked up a shot at the 12th before ending the day in style with back-to-back birdies at the 17th and 18th.

“It was actually not as solid as the first two days but I had two difficult double bogeys from two mistakes," said Bourdy. "The rest was good and solid though, I stayed calm and focused and that’s why I finished with two birdies.

“I’m challenging for the title, in a good position and I really like this course so let’s see how it goes. I’ll do my best to make it a great round tomorrow.”

Otaegui, who led after the first round, notched six birdies and a solitary bogey on his way to a 67.

Richard McEvoy and Joost Luiten are eight under after shooting rounds of 68 on Saturday, while young Swede Marcus Kinhult is another shot back after producing a bogey-free 65.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1WU, AshunCHN18-13
2OTAEGUI, AdrianESP18-12
3MCEVOY, RichardENG18-11
4MORRISON, JamesENG18-10
5LOMBARD, ZanderRSA18-9
T6STAL, GaryFRA18-8

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