England’s Paul Wesselingh is on course to take over pole position on the Senior Tour Order of Merit heading into the season finale after moving within a shot of the lead at the Fubon Senior Open in Taiwan.
Wesselingh, who is aiming to win the John Jacobs Trophy as the leading money winner as year after winning the Rookie of the Year honours, carded a four under par 68 to move to seven under 137 and just one stroke adrift of Lu Wen Teh heading into the final round at Miramar Golf and Country Club.
Significantly he is also ten shots ahead of the current Order of Merit leader Steen Tinning as he looks to make up the €9,932 deficit before the season finale in Mauritius. A top ten finish could be enough although he is trying not to think about that.
“I can only look after myself and not worry anyone else,” said Wesselingh. “I am just pleased to be in this position and happy to be seven under par.”
Wesselingh won twice earlier in the season, capturing the ISPS HANDA PGA Seniors Championship and the Bad Ragaz PGA Seniors Open but suffered a mystery bite in Switzerland which caused him to lose a stone in weight and knocked him off his stride in mid-summer. But five top tens in his last six outings have lifted him to second on the Order of Merit and he could well go top tomorrow.
“I am delighted with my year so far,” he said. “To be second on the Order of Merit with two events to go is fantastic. But the Number One race is still wide open and so many people can still win in Mauritius. It’s exciting.”
Wind and rain at the start made conditions tough for the first few holes of the round but the rain soon eased off and Wesselingh hit his stride. A birdie on the fourth, where he holed from five feet, was his only gain on the front nine but be picked up shots on the two par fives on the back nine as well as the 16th, where he pitched to seven feet.
“I played well again today,” he admitted, “And the most pleasing part is not to make a bogey on the first two days.”
Lu Wen Teh denied Wesselingh the lead heading into the final round by birdieing the last for an impressive round of 66 to move to eight under par, much to the delight of the home fans. England’s Bob Cameron lies in third place at four under par, four off the lead.
In the battle to become Senior Tour Number One, England’s Simon Brown lies joint ninth on one under par after a level par 72 while Tinning is down in a share of 27th on three over after bogeying his last three holes for a 73.