England’s Jim Rhodes heads into the final round of the Big 3 Records Monte Carlo Invitational with an excellent chance to win his first ever event on the European Seniors Tour but to do it he will have to overcome an American golfer who has won twice on this season’s circuit.
Rhodes, 55, from Cannock, recorded his second successive 67 to share the lead with John Grace at four under par 134 but he would have been even better placed had he not registered bogies on each of his last two holes.
That late lapse means that Rhodes dropped into a tie with Grace, winner of this season’s Belfry Seniors PGA and Ordina Legends in Golf titles, who added a three under par 66 to his opening 68.
Rhodes and Grace are one shot ahead of Spain’s Antonio Garrido and Australia’s Geoff Parslow and two in front of another Englishman, David Creamer, winner of this season’s Energis Masters at Wentworth.
“I hit the ball very well but I’ve got to admit that it was a disappointing way to finish,” said Rhodes. “It had been a long round but that still doesn’t excuse dropping a couple of careless shots over the last two holes.
“It’s a shame but I’m still in good shape for the final round.”
Grace is one of just three double winners on this season’s Seniors circuit and he could move into second place on the Order of Merit behind Australia’s Noel Ratcliffe if he wins the £21,000 first place cheque.
“I’ve already had a great season but to win again would be very special,” said the man who represented America in the 1975 Walker Cup at St Andrews.
“To be honest, I’ve already done a lot better than I expected this season, but I’ve played very well for the last two days so there’s no reason why I can’t win again.”
Veteran actor, Robert Wagner leads the Celebrity pro-am that is running concurrently with the pro event.
In the second round Wagner, a 12-handicapper, teamed up with Brazil’s Priscillo Diniz to record an incredible 11-under par 57.
He currently leads his tournament on 18-under par 120, three shots ahead of a group comprising actor Kevin Costner, tennis pro Tom Okker and Pauline Tarbuck, wife of comedian, Jimmy.Full leaderboard