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Saturday, 15 September 2018
Hideto Tanihara of Japan in action   (Getty Images)
Hideto Tanihara of Japan in action (Getty Images)
Hideto Tanihara equalled the course record at The Dutch to fire himself right into contention for second week running at the KLM Open.

The Japanese held his first 36-hole lead on the European Tour at last week's Omega European Masters and - after a brilliant 63 on Saturday in Spijk - he looked set for his first 54-hole lead just eight days later before a birdie on the last from Chris Wood pushed him into a share of second.

Tanihara is a 14-time winner on the Japan Golf Tour but announced himself to the European Tour last season as he finished fourth at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play and in a tie for third at the BMW PGA Championship.

He has four top tens so far this season as he looks for his first win in his first full campaign on Tour, and was delighted to be back at the right end of the leaderboard.

“I heard that it was a course record but I wasn’t concentrating on that today,” he said. “I just focused on my own game today.

It is my goal to win this tournament and I am very happy to be in this position going into the final day - Hideto Tanihara

“My playing partners did exceptionally well today but I tried not to think too much about what they were doing and concentrated more on myself.

“It is my goal to win this tournament and I am very happy to be in this position going into the final day.”

Jonathan Thomson is another man in form and he was alongside Tanihara after a firing a 68.

The Englishman is fighting to keep his playing privileges but is on the up after losing in a play-off recently at the Made in Denmark, and he insists he will just continue to enjoy himself.

“This is fantastic and it’s what we’re all here to do - to be in contention,” he said. “Let’s just have some fun out there.

“There might be times when it’s tough and there might be times when it’s easy but you have to just go out and enjoy it .”

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1WU, AshunCHN18-16
2WOOD, ChrisENG18-15
T3DETRY, ThomasBEL18-14
T3TANIHARA, HidetoJPN18-14
5HARRINGTON, PadraigIRL18-13
T6PEPPERELL, EddieENG18-12

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