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Saturday, 12 May 2018
Joakim Lagergren  (Getty Images)
Joakim Lagergren (Getty Images)

Joakim Lagergren will go in search of a first European Tour title on Sunday after a thrilling toe-to-toe battle with playing partner Mike Lorenzo-Vera on day three at Verdura Golf Club.

The Swede looked like he would threaten the course record when he added to gains on the second and third with five in a row from the sixth but he could only pick up one more shot in his last eight holes.

Lorenzo-Vera admitted he knew he had to up his game as he was watching Lagergren and he made birdies on the 11th, 12th, 13th, 15th and 16th as the duo shared the lowest rounds of the week with a pair of 63s.

That left the Frenchman two shots ahead of Lagergren at the close of play, and the three-time Qualifying School graduate was happy with his day's work.

"I started off very good going seven under through ten, played some awesome golf but didn't really continue that streak of birdies," he said. "It's still a really good round.

"A lot of fun, I just enjoyed it out there. It was a great day, beautiful weather and pretty calm, no wind at all, so I just enjoyed it.

"I wasn't great off the tee, I was pretty straight but some awful strikes here and there. The approach shots were really good and I didn't have to do a lot with the putter on the front nine."

Julien Guerrier was alongside Lagergren at 13 under after signing for a 67.

The Frenchman entered the day in a share of the lead and still held it at the turn before Lorenzo-Vera's birdie burst, not making his first bogey of the week until his 54th hole.

"I am a little bit disappointed because I finished with a bogey but otherwise I saved a lot of pars and I made an eagle on nine, which was good, and a birdie straight after on ten," he said.

"The course looked completely different without wind. The strategy is different, you can see some low scores with two guys shooting eight under, so it is very nice because everybody can win tomorrow.

"I am very proud to make only one bogey in three rounds, it's amazing, and I have to think of that and be happy. I am confident I am playing good, I don't make a lot of mistakes, so I just fight and try and be in the best position tomorrow."

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1LAGERGREN, JoakimSWE18-16
2LORENZO-VERA, MikeFRA18-16
T3HERBERT, LucasAUS18-15
T3SULLIVAN, AndyENG18-15
5BJERREGAARD, LucasDEN18-14
6GUERRIER, JulienFRA18-13

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