Cape Town - Lee Slattery fired an excellent 67 to
take a two-shot lead into the final round of the D+D REAL Czech Masters
after a marathon day at Albatross Golf Resort.
According to the official European Tour website, the Englishman shot an brilliant 65 on day two in tough conditions
before the course became flooded, leaving many of his competitors with
over 30 holes to play on Saturday.
He was one shot ahead at the start of the day but found himself three
behind countryman Chris Hanson by the time round three was completed.
Hanson did lead by four at one point but as he and some of the rest
of the field began to fatigue, Slattery put his foot on the pedal,
moving to 12-under and the 54-hole lead for the fourth time in his
European Tour career.
Both of his previous European Tour victories came after leading after
three rounds and win number three could be part of a double
celebration, with his wife over a week overdue with the couple's second
South African Haydn Porteous played 33 holes on Saturday, but battled well to shoot a third-round 67 and sit at 10-under.
Swede Pontus Widegren was then at eight under, a shot clear of Hanson
and fellow Englishman Jonathan Thomson who was making his European Tour
Slattery found the green in two at the par five first for an opening
birdie but with Hanson starting with two gains, he was four shots off
But as Hanson fell back, Slattery pushed on, putting his approach at
the sixth to six feet and another excellent iron into the ninth gave him
the lead at the turn.
A brilliant tee-shot into the par three 13th moved the 39 year old to
11 under and a fifth birdie of the day from six feet on the 15th put
him in control.
Porteous made a birdie-birdie start and a brilliant tee-shot into the
par three seventh had him at eight under. He got on the par five tenth
in two and when he holed from eight feet on the 12th he was in a share
of the lead.
Slattery then pulled away and a Porteous bogey on the 17th meant the
lead was three shots but the 23 year old holed a 10-footer on the last
for a birdie in the fading light.
Widegren birdied the first and sixth and when the Qualifying School
graduate hit a brilliant second out of the bunker into the eighth, he
was eight under. He then went bogey-birdie on the 14th and 15th on the
Hanson holed some clutch putts for par on the back nine but also made two doubles and three bogeys in a 75.
Thomson - a tournament invite - gave back gains on the eighth and
tenth with a double-bogey on the 11th but then birdied four of his next
five in a 68.
English duo James Morrison and Callum Shinkwin, last week's winner
Julian Suri, Austrian Martin Wiegele and Dane Jeff Winther were then all
at six under.