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Saturday, 09 March 2019
Thomas Detry  (Getty Images)
Thomas Detry (Getty Images)

Thomas Detry opened up a one shot lead at the top of a very congested leaderboard as the third round of the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters edged towards a conclusion at a windy Doha Golf Club.

The Belgian started round three two shots off the lead but picked up three shots in his first ten holes to sit at nine under, a shot ahead of a group nine players.

There were then another six at seven under, with the top 38 separated by just five shots.

Australian Jake McLeod was in the clubhouse at eight under after a 66 that included the fifth hole-in-one of the season, alongside Swedes Kristoffer Broberg and Anton Karlsson, South Africans George Coetzee and Justin Harding, Spaniard Nacho Elvira, Japan's Masahiro Kawamura, Frenchman Mike Lorenzo-Vera and England's Oliver Wilson.

There were 48 players separated by five shots at the end of day two and when the later groups got under way, there was quickly a seven way tie for the lead.

Detry eagled the par five first from 12 feet to be among that group but he was the first to break out of it with a 20 foot birdie on the third.

He was not alone for long as co-overnight leader Harding played a lovely chip on his opener to quickly get back into a share.

Wilson birdied the first and fourth and when Coetzee holed a 15 footer of his own on the fourth, there were four players at nine under.

Wilson made a first bogey of the week after missing from the fringe on the fifth and while Coetzee did brilliantly to save par on the same hole after finding a nasty lie off the tee, a poor bunker shot led to a dropped shot on the sixth.

Those bogeys dropped the duo to eight under where they sat alongside the flying McLeod.

The 24-year-old - who earned his place on Tour by winning last season's ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit - made the second hole-in-one of the week with a seven iron from 171 yards on the third.

That followed countryman Deyen Lawson's ace on the 17th in round two.

His ace was sandwiched by a birdie on the first and a bogey on the fourth, with another dropped shot on the seventh cancelled out by a birdie on the ninth.

Further gains came on the tenth and 15th and when McLeod chipped in over a bunker on the par five last for an eagle, he was the clubhouse leader.

Detry then bogeyed the par three eighth and with Harding doing the same after failing to get up and down from the sand, we were into a seven way tie at the top.

Elvira had birdies on the first and third to be in that group, Broberg made gains on the ninth and tenth, and Lorenzo-Vera started his day with nine pars.

Karlsson birdied the second, fourth and seventh with bogeys on the fifth and eighth to turn in 35, and when he birdied the tenth there were eight players at eight under.

Kawamura sandwiched a bogey on the seventh with birdies on the first and tenth.

Detry then played a sublime pitch on the par five tenth to set up a birdie and edge ahead.

Coetzee failed to get up and down from a bunker on the eighth put regained the stroke on the par five next.

Christiaan Bezuidenhout was in the clubhouse two off the lead, with Jorge Campiilo, Nicolas Colsaerts, Jacques Kruyswijk, Min Woo Lee and Erik van Rooyen still out on course.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1HARDING, JustinRSA18-13
T2CHOI, JinhoKOR18-11
T2COETZEE, GeorgeRSA18-11
T2BEZUIDENHOUT, ChristiaanRSA18-11
T2CAMPILLO, JorgeESP18-11
T2KARLSSON, AntonSWE18-11

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