Pieters extends Spain lead

European Tour

Overnight leader Thomas Pieters extended his Open de España to two strokes on Saturday after carding third round 71.

At seven-under-par, the Dutchman leads home favourite Miguel Angel Jiménez by two, after the Spaniard carded a 69 on the day.

It could have been much better for the 50-year-old, after he birdied six of his first 13 holes, but bogeys on 15 and 18 saw him drop down the leaderboard somewhat.

“I’m a little disappointed with that,” admitted Jiménez, who added that he has no plans to switch to the Champions Tour after finishing fourth in the Masters last month.

“I didn’t hit it very well the last few holes.

“I played very well the first nine holes and was solid until the 14th but made a bad bogey on the 15th where I three-putted from eight metres and also bogeyed the last.

“It would be nice. I’d love to win the Spanish Open of course and we’ll see what happens tomorrow.”

In a tie for third place on four-under par are Richard Green and Chris Wood – who both carded 69s – as well as Richie Ramsay (71).

A group of five players – Ross Fisher (67), Joost Luiten (74), Felipe Aguilar (69), Richard Bland (72) and Maximilian Kieffer (69) – another stroke further behind on three-under.

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