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Sensational Scott leads ahead of final round

Sensational Scott leads ahead of final round

Home favourite Adam Scott will take a one shot lead into the final round of the Australian PGA Championship as he bids to win his second title at RACV Royal Pines Resort.

Adam Scott

The 2013 champion made his vast experience count on Saturday, firing a battling 69 to climb to the top of the leaderboard on a day when low morning scoring gave way to more conservative numbers in the afternoon.

Scott, roared on by a vocal Gold Coast crowd, bounced back from an early bogey with four birdies - including two in the last three holes - to get to ten under par and take the 54 hole lead.

His close friend and countryman Wade Ormsby is Scott's nearest challenger on nine under courtesy of his spotless 70, while early starter Nick Flanagan is among the large group another shot back in a tie for third after equalling the men's course record with a flawless 63 in the morning.

Also on eight under were halfway leader Carl Yuan, Min Woo Lee and Michael Hendry, who received treatment for a rib injury during the round.

Ten-time European Tour winner Scott began the day two shots behind overnight leader Yuan and slipped further off the pace after dropping a shot at the fifth.

But he closed the front nine with a birdie at the ninth before a stunning approach into the tenth allowed him to pick up another shot.

After an important up-and-down saw him save par at the 15th, 2013 Masters Tournament winner Scott delighted the fans surrounding the 16th green as he drained a lengthy birdie putt to join the lead on nine under.

And after watching his long-range effort pull up just short on the 17th, Scott treated the locals to the shot of the day at the 18th, knocking his approach to four feet and tapping in to grab the outright lead.

He said: "It was not easy. I scrambled well on the 13th, 14th and 15th to stay in it and then had a good finish. 

"Some days it's not that pretty, but it's effective.

"It's incredibly bunched, and if it's windy tomorrow, it's going to be hard for anyone to really separate themselves unless they just play an incredible round of golf, go out there and roll in a lot of putts.

"For me, my strategy's going to be the same. Unless I hole a lot of long putts, I don't see myself just running away with this thing. I'm in for a fight tomorrow."

Wade Ormsby

Ormsby, who has one European Tour title to his name, was rewarded for a marvellous tee shot at the short fifth with a close range birdie.

He picked up another shot on the front nine when he took advantage of the long ninth for the third day in succession before safely parring his way home to stay in contention.

"I put myself in a perfect position going into Sunday, I guess," said Ormsby. 

"It's tricky out there with the wind and some of the pin positions. Everything's getting firmer. I'm not sure how those boys shot their scores this morning, but you just have to hang in there."

Flanagan made nine birdies and no bogeys in favourable early scoring conditions to improve on his Friday 73 by a remarkable ten shots, while fellow early starter Alejandro Cañizares posted a 64.