European Tour

Luiten surges to Irish lead

2013-06-29 21:10
Joost Luiten (Gallo)

Maynooth - Dutchman Joost Luiten produced a flawless third round six under par 66 to move one shot clear of his rivals at 13-under par at the Irish Open on Saturday.

The absence of Ireland's four Major champions makes little difference to the 27-year-old as he seeks a second victory this month at Carton House.

"It's always good if you have a round with no bogeys, especially today, as it was quite tricky there with some rain in the beginning and some strong winds in the afternoon," said Luiten who captured the Lyoness Open this month in Austria.

He added: "I've been playing good the last two weeks, the last three weeks actually. I now just need to go out there tomorrow (Sunday), and try to do the same, and hopefully that's enough to win the trophy."

Spain's Pablo Larrazabal, also with a round of 66, is in second place at 12-under par and while Ireland's four Major winners in Padraig Harrington, Graeme McDowell, Rory McIlroy and Darren Clarke missed the second round cut, Luiten is under no illusion he still faces a tough assignment if he is to capture the prize.

"You really can't worry about who is behind you on the leader board as the key for me will be trying to get some early birdies to help set up a good score," said Luiten.

"So I am not bothered who is behind me.

"I won earlier this month in Austria and that is always good to get under your belt as it just makes things a little easier, and it also makes you strive that little bit more for the win when you've got a recent victory in the bag.

"So I've got nothing to lose and that's how I am going to approach the final round."

Larrazabal also is a two-time Tour winner but the 30-year old Barcelona-born player's last success was two years ago in the BMW International Open in Munich.

"I had a lovely day in the office today with the Irish crowds truly awesome," he said.

"I'm playing good. I didn't play as good the last three months, so I feel I am hitting the ball good and will now fight for the tournament. I hope tomorrow I can hit the ball as good as these three days and hole as many putts."

England's Robert Rock (71) is in third place on 10-under par and still within sight of making amends to losing out in a play-off for the 2009 Irish Open.

Two players, England's Paul Casey (67) and rookie Scotland-born Scott Henry (69) are tied in fourth place on nine under par.

Six players share sixth place on eight under par including former Irish Open winner, Jose Maria Olazabal (71) who is looking to end an eight year Tour victory drought.

Read more on:    irish open  |  golf


Read News24’s Comments Policy 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
Comments have been closed for this article.


Which is your favourite event on the golfing calendar?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2019/20 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

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