Donaldson leads by three
There was no catching Jamie Donaldson at the Nedbank Golf Challenge on Saturday.
The Welshman led by two shots overnight, and will take a three-shot advantage into Sunday’s final round after another solid five-under-par 67.
Donaldson got out of the blocks quickly with birdies at the fourth and fifth holes, and then added four more after the turn in the space of just six holes.
His lead might have been even bigger, but for a lone bogey at the par-four 17th, and considering the quality of the chasing field, Donaldson is taking nothing for granted.
“This is one of the best fields in the world and a three-shot lead doesn’t mean much,” said the Welshman, who won in Abu Dhabi in January and went on to finish fifth in the Race to Dubai in 2013.
“I’m looking forward to the final round. It’s going to be a tough day on a difficult course.
“It was hard work out there, even when you are playing well. You can’t sit back for a minute, because every hole is difficult. It’s very important to stay in the present and keep hitting good shots.
“I’m looking forward to tomorrow. I’ll play as aggressively as I can and take on all the shots that I would if it was the first day. I have to go out there and play aggressive golf where I can.
“It would be very special to win. It’s a great golf course and a great country. I’ve won twice on the European Tour so far, but every win is special. This would just be a little more special.”
Donaldson’s closest challengers are American Ryan Moore, a recent winner on the PGA Tour, and Dane Thomas Bjorn, who carded rounds of 67 and 66 respectively. The duo both made significant gains, but with Donaldson not letting up, they were unable to close the gap.
“If you can shoot 66 or 67 (on Sunday) you give yourself a chance and then it’s up to other people. You have to try and be as patient as I have been these three days,” said Bjorn.
“I have stuck to my game plan and it has worked out well and if I can do that tomorrow hopefully it can add some pressure and you can be there right at the end.
“To chase somebody down on this golf course is just going to get you into trouble so just play sensible golf and try to make a putt here and there.”
Sergio Garcia (66), Thongchai Jaidee (66) and Henrik Stenson (69) follow a further two strokes back, while Brendon de Jonge is a full seven strokes adrift after a 69.
Garcia provided some fireworks at the end of his round, producing one of the shots of the day to chip in for eagle on the 14th, following it up with birdies on 16 and 17.
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