Wiesberger edges ahead in Rome

Bernd Wiesbeger turned in 31 to take a two shot lead into the closing stages of the Italian Open as he looks for a second Rolex Series victory of the season in Rome.

Bernd Wiesberger

The Austrian played his first ten holes at Olgiata Golf Club in four under to get to 14 under and lead the way from overnight leader Matthew Fitzpatrick, another Englishman in Matt Wallace and American Kurt Kitayama.

Wiesberger would return to the top of the Race to Dubai Rankings Presented by Rolex should he win for a third time this season, while Kitayama is also looking for a hat-trick of victories in his rookie campaign.

A win for Fitzpatrick would make him the youngest Englishman to six European Tour wins, with Wallace looking to join him on five.

Scot Robert MacIntyre was at 11 under, a shot clear of Austria's Matthias Schwab.

Fitzpatrick recovered from a poor tee shot on the first to make a par but replied with a stunner to seven feet on the par three second for a first birdie of the day and a two shot lead.

Kitayama also recovered from an error off the tee to par the first and he was joined at 12 under by MacIntyre, who hit the cup at the fourth and tapped in for his birdie.

Wiesberger made a birdie with a long putt at the fifth before putting his approach on the next to five feet and he was in the group at 12 under.

The 34-year-old then rolled home a 20 footer with a big right to left turn on the seventh and he was within one.

He was not the only Austrian going well as Schwab rolled home a very slippery putt at the tenth to go with gains on the first, third, sixth and ninth.

Schwab was joined at 11 under by MacIntyre after the European Challenge Tour graduate went right off the tee at the sixth and hit a tree with his second to surrender a bogey.

Wallace had put a wonderful approach to two feet at the first and after three putting the fifth, another dialled in iron at the par three seventh had him within three.

Kitayama broke his run of pars with an excellent tee shot to around 12 feet at the seventh to join Wiesberger.

There was a tie at the top as Wiesbeger holed from nine feet at the ninth to turn in 31, with Fitzpatrick making an excellent par save on the eighth after finding a rotten lie off the tee.

The overnight leader then went out of bounds off the ninth tee and surrendered a double bogey, with Kitayama bogeying after finding a bush with his first shot.

Schwab dropped a shot on the 11th to sit a shot ahead of Andrew Johnston and Andrea Pavan.

Read next