Sunday, 14 August 2016
Justin Rose  (Getty Images)
Justin Rose (Getty Images)

Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson were battling it out for a place in the history books as the final round of the Olympic Men's Golf Competition got under way in Rio de Janeiro.

Golf was making its first appearance at the Games for 112 years and Rose came into the final day with a one-shot lead over Stenson at 12 under after firing a brilliant 65 on Saturday.

The Briton maintained that advantage after four holes as both players made a pair of birdies to pull away from the rest of the field.

Australia's Marcus Fraser dropped two shots in his first four holes to slip to seven under and sit alongside Rafa Cabrera Bello, Sergio Garcia, Thomas Pieters and Seamus Power.

Rose and Stenson were attempting to add yet another honour to their glittering CVs, with both having won a Major Championship, the Harry Vardon Trophy and been part of victorious European Ryder Cup teams - winning three points out of three as a pair at Gleneagles in 2014.

For Swede Stenson, the duel may have been bringing back memories of last month, when he held off Phil Mickelson in a sensational last-day tussle to win The Open Championship.

The leading duo made an ominous start as Stenson got on the green at the par five first in two and Rose put his pitch to three feet, resulting in a pair of opening birdies.

Stenson has been holing some long putts this week - including a 108-foot effort in round two - and while he and Rose both made the front of the second green, it was the 40 year old who rolled in a 40-footer to take a share of the lead.

That did not last long, however, as Rose put his approach on the next to six feet to make a second birdie of the day.

A three-putt bogey saw Fraser drop to eight under and when he repeated the trick on the fourth, an exciting battle for bronze was on the cards, with European Tour Members in contention to lock out the podium.

Spaniard Garcia was five under for the day through ten holes with team-mate Cabrera Bello making an eagle on the fifth in his first six.

Belgian Pieters had four birdies on the front nine to turn in 31, with Irishman Power making six birdies in 11 holes.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Grégory Bourdy and David Lingmerth were in the group at six under.

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