Golf

Westwood catches Oosthuizen

2012-11-03 11:02
Louis Oosthuizen (AP)

Shenzhen, China - Lee Westwood shot up the scoreboard with 11-under-par 61 to erase Louis Oosthuizen's five-stroke lead on a day of ultra-low rounds at the $7m WGC-HSBC Champions on Saturday.

The Englishman's 11-birdie blitz put him at 18-under-par 198 through three rounds, level with overnight leader Oosthuizen who battled to a 70 on the par-72 Olazabal Course at southern China's Mission Hills.

On a day of red numbers at Dongguan, even Westwood's brilliant round was eclipsed by America's Brandt Snedeker, who shot a course-record 60 - and only narrowly missed a birdie putt on 18 for a magical score of 59.

Westwood and Oosthuizen will go into the last round three strokes ahead of America's Phil Mickelson, a double WGC-HSBC Champions winner and four-time Major champion, who blazed back into contention with a 66.

Ian Poulter and Bill Haas were four shots off the lead along with Ernie Els, who whittled down fellow South African Oosthuizen's overnight advantage before imploding with a watery double-bogey on the par-five 15th.

Snedeker was five off the pace after his astonishing 60, which was all but matched by Westwood as the former world number one started the day nine shots adrift and finished with the joint lead.

"I just wanted to come out fast and try to get some momentum. That's been missing from my game the last couple of weeks," said Westwood.

"I came out as quick as you like with three birdies, and that got me going and the hole started to look bigger."

Snedeker was playing in the day's first group after modest rounds of 72 and 71, but he quickly set the course alight with four birdies through his first four holes before turning at six under.

Another birdie on 10 was followed by a "fluke", 75-foot birdie on the par-three 13th. Snedeker went eagle, birdie on 15 and 16, and then rolled in a 25-footer on 17 to raise hopes of a magical 59 - but his birdie putt on 18 crept just wide.

"I'd love to have that putt again," he said. "I hit a great putt and it stinks not doing it (59) but it's still a great round and I got back in the golf tournament, which is nice."

With Oosthuizen and Els locked in a dogfight in the final group, Westwood was tearing up the course as he played alongside his Ryder Cup team-mates Poulter and Martin Kaymer, the defending champion.

His triple-birdie start was followed by three more by the halfway mark, another on 11 and then four in a row from 14 to 17, aided by a red-hot putter.

"The course is in great condition and we're starting to get used to playing it," said Westwood, when asked to explain the day's low scores.

"As the week's gone on and we've played it and walked it, we're starting to see lower and lower scores."

Oosthuizen, the 2010 British Open winner, had shot 63 on Friday to go 16 under after two rounds, a World Golf Championships record. But he found day three heavy going in the company of his mentor, Els, and Adam Scott.

The 30-year-old paid for a slow start when Els caught him at the top of the leaderboard on the 14th hole. However, the veteran Els immediately dropped back when he splashed into the lake on 15 for double-bogey, and also bogeyed 16.

Oosthuizen went close with an eagle attempt on 15 but it was typical of a day in which his putts just wouldn't drop.

"Frustrating," he said afterwards. "Early I didn't play well and then started to find a little bit of form on the back nine, but just didn't make any putts.

"You can see all the birdies that were out there, looking at the leaderboard. But I'm still in a good position going into tomorrow."

Northern Ireland's Graeme McDowell recovered from slamming his hand in his hotel door to shoot a 68, while India's Gaganjeet Bhullar also got among the birdies with a bogey-free 63.

Scores from the WGC-Champions Tournament at the par-72 course on Saturday in Shenzhen:

198 Lee Westwood (Britain) 70 67 61
Louis Oosthuizen (South Africa) 65 63 70 201 Phil Mickelson (U.S.) 66 69 66 202 Ian Poulter (Britain) 69 68 65
Bill Haas (U.S.) 69 67 66
Ernie Els (South Africa) 70 63 69 203 Brandt Snedeker (U.S.) 72 71 60 204 Gaganjeet Bhullar (India) 73 68 63
Carl Pettersson (Sweden) 70 68 66
Martin Kaymer (Germany) 68 69 67
Scott Piercy (U.S.) 68 68 68
Adam Scott (Australia) 65 68 71 205 Luke Donald (Britain) 68 68 69
Jason Dufner (U.S.) 68 66 71 206 Marc Leishman (Australia) 73 68 65
Prom Meesawat (Thailand) 67 70 69
Thorbjorn Olesen (Denmark) 71 65 70
Shane Lowry (Ireland) 66 68 72 207 Marcel Siem (Germany) 71 70 66
Hiroyuki Fujita (Japan) 73 67 67
Keegan Bradley (U.S.) 71 68 68
Bubba Watson (U.S.) 66 72 69
Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (Spain) 71 67 69
Thongchai Jaidee (Thailand) 70 68 69 209 Justin Rose (Britain) 72 70 67
Wu Ashun (China) 68 70 71 210 Thomas Bjorn (Denmark) 72 70 68
Greg Chalmers (Australia) 71 71 68
Thomas Aiken (South Africa) 68 73 69
Peter Hanson (Sweden) 66 71 73 211 Scott Hend (Australia) 70 74 67
Liang Wenchong (China) 72 73 66
Jang Ik-Jae (South Korea) 68 71 72 212 Tadahiro Takayama (Japan) 73 69 70
Thaworn Wiratchant (Thailand) 72 70 70
Joost Luiten (Netherlands) 72 72 68
Bernd Wiesberger (Austria) 72 72 68
John Senden (Australia) 72 70 70
Paul Lawrie (Britain) 69 71 72 213 Brendan Jones (Australia) 74 69 70
Nick Watney (U.S.) 72 72 69
Julien Quesne (France) 71 71 71
Robert Garrigus (U.S.) 76 68 69 214 Graeme McDowell (Britain) 71 75 68 215 Marcus Fraser (Australia) 73 72 70 216 Jeev Milkha Singh (India) 72 71 73
Jamie Donaldson (Britain) 71 74 71
Mark Wilson (U.S.) 73 74 69
Alvaro Quiros (Spain) 72 76 68 217 Francesco Molinari (Italy) 74 69 74
Garth Mulroy (South Africa) 70 74 73
Nicolas Colsaerts (Belgium) 73 73 71
Robert Allenby (Australia) 76 72 69
George Coetzee (South Africa) 73 76 68
Brad Kennedy (Australia) 73 77 67 218 Han Lee (U.S.) 73 70 75
David Lynn (Britain) 76 69 73
Danny Willett (Britain) 74 73 71
Kim Hyung-Sung (South Korea) 78 70 70 219 Jaco Van Zyl (South Africa) 74 75 70
Dustin Johnson (U.S.) 67 68 84 220 Zhang Xinjun (China) 75 69 76
Rafael Cabrera-Bello (Spain) 75 69 76
Hennie Otto (South Africa) 76 73 71 221 Toshinori Muto (Japan) 74 71 76
Richie Ramsay (Britain) 78 71 72
Geoff Ogilvy (Australia) 75 74 72
Branden Grace (South Africa) 75 76 70
David Lipsky (U.S.) 78 74 69 222 Yuta Ikeda (Japan) 70 70 82
Johnson Wagner (U.S.) 75 74 73 223 Kyle Stanley (U.S.) 79 70 74 224 Robert Rock (Britain) 78 70 76 226 Jbe' Kruger (South Africa) 83 72 71
Kenichi Kuboya (Japan) 77 83 66 229 Mohammad Siddikur (Bangladesh) 77 76 76 232 Hu Mu (China) 79 74 79

NEXT ON SPORT24X

Firestone perfect for Tiger

2014-07-31 09:40

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • SS3
    Thu, 31 Jul 2014 @
    04:00
  • SS4
    Thu, 31 Jul 2014 @
    05:00
  • SS5
    Thu, 31 Jul 2014 @
    05:59
  • SS7
    Thu, 31 Jul 2014 @
    06:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

 
 
Featured Blog

Dave ask if you would like to meet your local sports heroes and stand the chance to win prizes to the value of over R40 000.

Latest blogs
Vote

Which is your favourite event on the golfing calendar?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

TV schedule Plan your couch time with our searchable sport TV guide

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.