A crowded leaderboard sees four different nationalities tied for the lead on 13 under heading into the final day of the Commmercial Bank Qatar Masters
After a fascinating third round on yet another day of only very modest wind in Doha, two of the overnight leaders – Branden Grace and Bernd Wiesberger – retained their position at the head of the Qatar Masters field, joined by Argentina’s Emiliano Grillo and Scotland’s Marc Warren.
World number 71, Warren, added a solid 67 to Thursday’s 65 to be the first to hit the 13-under mark, and will go into Saturday in search of a fourth tour title. For the rapidly improving Grillo, who finished 44th on the Race to Dubai last year, victory tomorrow would bring a maiden tour triumph at just 22 years of age. The young Argentine has now gone 42 holes bogey-free in Doha with no blemishes on the card for the second day running.
Grace, who got off to a slow start, seemed to gain inspiration from a miracle shot he hit from the desert on the 6th to set up an unlikely birdie, and went on to hole a six-footer on 18 to join the group at 13-under. Wiesberger was the last man to join the quartet out in front with a closing birdie of his own on 18 from five feet.
Just behind the four leaders, three players stand on 11-under – overnight co-leader George Coetzee, Alejandro Canizares and the just-turned-24-year-old Englishman, Eddie Pepperell. He crammed nine birdies into his 65 – the low round of the day – to climb 27 places, and, like Grillo, will look to convert his early tour promise into a maiden victory on Saturday.
For defending champion Sergio Garcia it was a round to forget. Still in the hunt through 10, the Spaniard played his remaining eight holes in seven-over par to end his hopes of a successful title defence, with a double-bogey on 11 and a disastrous triple bogey on 15 sealing his fate.
Saturday looks set to be a great day with several experienced campaigners looking to add to their tour tally, and two talented youngsters, in Grillo and Pepperell, looking to get off the mark.