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Saturday, 15 December 2018
Scott Jamieson  (Getty Images)
Scott Jamieson (Getty Images)

Scott Jamieson continued his love affair with South Africa as he opened up a one-shot lead heading into the final round of the Alfred Dunhill Championship.

The Scotsman fired a 68 in round three at Leopard Creek Country Club to get to 11 under and lead the way from American David Lipsky.

Defending champion Brandon Stone and fellow South African Zander Lombard were at eight under, a shot clear of Scottish pair David Drysdale and Marc Warren, Frenchman Raphaël Jacquelin and Spaniard Pablo Larrazábal.

Jamieson won the Nelson Mandela Championship presented by ISPS HANDA in Durban in December 2012 and then finished in the top three here at Leopard Creek just a week later.

He returned to Durban in January 2013 to finish second at the Volvo Golf Champions and in the 2017 season finished fourth here and second at the Nedbank Golf Challenge hosted by by Gary Player for his best Rolex Series result.

Jamieson said on Friday that he may have made half of his career earnings in South Africa and he could be set for European Tour title number two on Sunday.

“It’s obviously a great place to be but I’m certainly not getting ahead of myself,” he said. “There’s an awful long way to go and a lot can happen in 18 holes, especially on this golf course, this back nine, where there’s so much risk-reward.

“There’s a long way to go and hopefully I can do it but let’s see what happens."

Lipsky began the day with a one-shot lead but that became a seven-way tie on the front nine as players jostled for position.

Jamieson got on the second green in two to lead alone as playing partner Lipsky needed a drop after tee trouble and then topped his fourth on the par five to surrender a bogey.

Lipsky picked the shot straight back up from three feet on the next but bogeyed the seventh after finding sand, while Jamieson bogeyed the sixth.

Lombard holed from six feet on the fourth and hit excellent tee-shots into the par-three fifth and seventh - the latter to two feet - to turn in 32 and join the leading group.

A tee-shot to tap-in range at the 12th handed him the solo lead but Jamieson holed an eight-footer on the ninth to share top spot at the turn.

Lombard got up and down on the par-five 13th for a birdie but was leapfrogged by Jamieson, who drove the 11th green and holed a 15-foot putt for a spectacular eagle.

Lombard birdied the par-five 15th after another up-and-down but bogeyed the 14th, 16th and 17th, and when Jamieson holed a long birdie putt on the 15th, the lead was three.

The 35 year old found a treacherous bunker off the next tee, however, and surrendered a double-bogey to see his advantage trimmed to one.

Lombard set up an eagle chance with a brilliant second into the last but had to settle for a birdie to sit at eight under alongside Lipsky, who had earlier got up and down to birdie the 11th.

The 30 year old got on the 15th green in two for an eagle to briefly lead alone but Jamieson followed him in for a birdie and the pair were two clear.

Lipsky found sand off the tee on the 16th and put his second into another bunker for a double-bogey, with Jamieson holing a left-to-righter after a beautiful tee-shot to lead by three again.

The 2014 Omega European Masters champion then hit an excellent approach into the 17th and third into the last after laying up for a birdie-birdie finish.

Stone birdied the fourth, chipped in at the tenth and then missed glorious chances on the 11th, 12th and 13th before taking advantage of the 15th.

Jacquelin carded a 66, one shot better than Larrazábal, while Drysdale recorded a 71 and Warren fought back from a poor start for a level-par 72.

Last week's winner Louis Oosthuizen, fellow South African Christiaan Bezuidenhout and Swede Niklas Lemke were five shots off the lead.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1LIPSKY, DavidUSA18-14
2DRYSDALE, DavidSCO18-12
T3LOMBARD, ZanderRSA18-11
T3JAMIESON, ScottSCO18-11
T5WILSON, OliverENG18-8
T5EVANS, BenENG18-8

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