Paul Dunne made another positive move up the leaderboard when he made six birdies and three bogeys in a three under 68 on the KLM Open at The Dutch.
Seeking a big finish that would ease his worries about retaining his card, the Greystones’ man moved up 10 place to tied 27th on seven under par.
The 23-year old is seven strokes behind leader Scott Hend but just three shots outside the Top 10 in an event where he followed a first round 74 with a joint career low of 64 to make the cut.
Hend will take the lead into the final round of a European Tour event for the second week in a row after an excellent 64.
Beaten in a playoff by Alex Noren in Switzerland last week, the Australian began the third round three shots off the lead and recovered from an early bogey at the second with six birdies and an eagle.
At 14 under, he has a one-shot lead over Italy’s Nino Bertasio who held a two-shot lead as he stood on the 18th tee but a closing birdie from Hend coupled with his own double-bogey meant the 28 year old will be playing catch up at The Dutch on Sunday afternoon.
Scott Hend (-14)
“The swing felt a little off today but I managed to hang in there and stay patient and once I kind of steadied the ship I managed to hit some really good shots and take advantage of those opportunities. So it was one of those days where I kind of hung in there and got the most out of it. I hit a great four iron into 15 and managed to make eagle. I have been practicing that one on the range so it’s about time I did it on the golf course so that was really pleasing.
“I am putting some good scores together and obviously have carried that on from last week where I went pretty close. Hopefully I can go one better tomorrow but I need to get everything right as there are some great players on that leaderboard.
“Me and Tony (Carolan, his caddie) just get on really well together. There is no magic there. We are polar opposites so it matches up really well. He is the kind of guy who will go and stay in the 'Bush' for three weeks and camp out and go fishing. I am a go the Hilton and sit on the beach kind of guy so it matches up really well!”
Nino Bertasio (-13)
“It was another good solid day. I played very well again and made a couple of monster putts today which was a surprise because yesterday they all seemed to be close range yesterday. I have been surprised how calm I have been out there and how much I have enjoyed this week. I just love the golf course and have been loving it out there. We will see what happens tomorrow. I am really looking forward to it – I know I will be playing with Scott tomorrow which is great because we played together at the Olympics which was an amazing experience. We will have a good time out there tomorrow as well.”
Joost Luiten (-11)
“It could have been a little better than two under but overall I have to be pretty happy with it. I left one out there with the three putt on 16 and the putter wasn’t as good as yesterday when I manged to hole a couple of long ones. But that is golf – some days they go in and the next they won’t so I am happy with two under. It was tricky today to get close to the pins, but anything under r is good round here and I am in a pretty good position for the weekend.
“The birdie at the last is always nice – it was great to finish like that on a positive. This has been the busiest I have ever seen at a KLM Open and the crowds have been amazing. It’s only Saturday today so hopefully we can have even more here tomorrow and I can get a low round going and try and win this title again because that is what I came here to do.”
Round three scores
199 S Hend (Aus) 67 68 64,
200 N Bertasio (Ita) 66 67 67,
202 R Bland (Eng) 67 69 66, J Luiten (Ned) 69 64 69, D Horsey (Eng) 67 68 67, B Evans (Eng) 65 69 68,
203 S Khan (Eng) 68 67 68, B Wiesberger (Aut) 66 66 71, T Fleetwood (Eng) 67 67 69, B Stone (RSA) 72 68 63,
206 Paul Dunne (Irl) 74 64 68