3 share lead heading into find round of Oman Open

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3 share lead heading into find round of Oman Open

Euro Tour

3 share lead heading into find round of Oman Open


Three players share the lead heading into the final round of the $1.75 million NBO Oman Open, with two chasing their first European Tour wins against an experienced campaigner.

Joost Luiten, Julian Guerrier and Matthew Southgate are tied at the top on 12 under par. Another five players are within four shots of the lead.

Five-time winner Luiten has moved into a tie for the lead courtesy of successive 66s. A Dutchman, he is the favourite given his experience, but the possibility of a breakthrough win will inspire Southgate and 2006 British Amateur champion Julien Guerrier.

“I know my game-plan and I know what to do around this golf course,” said Luiten, who is looking for his first victory since the 2016 KLM Open. “You need to be a bit patient and wait for your chances. If I can hit my irons like I did today, there will definitely be some birdies.”

Guerrier has yo-yoed between the European Challenge Tour and main European Tour since winning the Amateur Championship at Royal St George’s. He’s made nine trips to the Qualifying School, and his best money list finish is 122nd in 2010. He gained his card for this year’s tour courtesy of two wins on last year’s Challenge Tour. 

“The players out here on the European Tour are really good so you have to push always, and if it’s your week, it’s your week,” the long hitter said. “Right now, it’s going well for me.

“I have to do the same tomorrow. I want to work in these conditions, under pressure, to see how I’m feeling. I’ve played a lot of years on the Challenge Tour and I’ve played a couple of years on the European Tour too.

“I try to improve every day, I’m still fighting and I want to stay on the European Tour.” 

Southgate, 29, has been a European mainstay since 2016 when he earned his card at the Q School just three months after surgery for testicular cancer. He began the third round with three birdies, but fell back with bogeys at the fourth and sixth holes before making a double bogey at the seventh. Four birdies on the remaining holes took him into a tie for the lead.


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