Clark Dennis produced a bogey-free round of 65, six under par, to take a three-shot lead into the final round at the inaugural MCB Tour Championship – Madagascar.
The American recorded the lowest round of the week as he made six birdies without dropping a shot, which propelled him to the top of the leaderboard after starting the day four shots off the top.
Dennis, a five-time winner on the Staysure Tour and last year’s MCB Tour Championship – Mauritius champion, followed up his opening round of 72, one over par, with a stunning performance at International Golf Club Du Rova.
The 53-year-old is no stranger to charging up leaderboards following his summer success at the WINSTONgolf Senior Open, where he came from six shots behind on the final day to win his fifth title on the over 50s circuit, and his sights were set on the lead during round two in Madagascar.
He began the day with five consecutive pars before making two gains ahead of the turn at the sixth and ninth holes. The patient and controlled approach continued on the back nine as four successive pars were greeted with a flurry of birdies from the 14th to the 16th before he ended the day with a final gain at the last.
Following his move up the leaderboard and a bogey free round, Dennis was very pleased and was grateful to have a little bit of luck on his side.
“It’s difficult to go bogey free around here because there are a lot of crazy bounces and the greens are difficult,” he said. “I was really fortunate to get through the round without a bogey.
“This course is very tricky. You’ve got to really control your ball around it and have a little bit of luck involved, and fortunately I had a couple of good bounces today.
“I actually played very nice coming in and hit some nice short chip shots. The 16th is a difficult par three and you’ve got to hit it left of the green and I hit it on a perfect line, and it came to 15 feet and I made the putt, which was a bonus. I had a couple of nice bounces coming in and birdied the last, so it was a good finish.
“You have to stay patient on this course because you’re going to hit some putts that won’t go where you think they’re going to go, plus you’re going to have some bounces that end up in some crazy places. It’s a good test that is made difficult with a bit of wind.”
Also racing up the leaderboard on day two was 2018 Staysure Tour Rookie of the Year, who recovered from three dropped shots in his first three holes, to card five birdies in ten holes, including one on the last to sign for a round of 69 and sit three strokes behind Dennis.
Overnight leader Gary Evans recorded a disappointing round of 73, two over par, but remains in contention as part of a chasing pack, including fellow Englishman Barry Lane, Spain’s José Manuel Carriles and Stephen Dodd of Wales, who all share third place four shots off the lead.
The final round of the maiden MCB Tour Championship – Madagascar gets under way at 08:00am local time with Dennis going in search of his sixth Staysure Tour at 10:45am.