Lee Westwood/ getty images
England’s Lee Westwood caught Louis Oosthuizen at the top of the leaderboard after his wonderful third round of -11 under par, 61, at Mission Hills in China, at the WGC-HSBC Champions. Both players are now at -18 under par for the tournament as Louis had a more modest third round of -2 under par to record his -18 under par total. Amazingly Lee Westwood has played in 41 WGC events, more than any other player, but he still has yet to record a win. A fact that is not lost on the 39 year-old Lee, who has been runner three times, the Worlds fourth ranked player said;
“ It does surprise me I’ve played more than anyone else, I didn’t realize I was that old! I know I’ve played a lot but I’ve never won one. As the week’s gone on, and we’ve played it and walked it more, I started to sort of get a feel for the golf course more and sort of see the lower scores around it. I played very solidly, got off to a nice start, birdied the first three holes and kept ticking over, birdieing the odd hole and finished strongly. I hit it good, hit it in the fairway, hit it close, and made a couple of 20 footers which has been missing.”
Louis had standing still day, which has brought everybody else back into contention. By contrast to his round Brandt Snedeker matched The European Tour’s lowest round with a -12 under par, 60 , Brandt also had a putt for a first-ever 59 on the final green. Louis, the former Open Champion managed only four birdies and two bogeys in his -2 under par 70, he spoke of his frustration today;
” Early I didn’t play really well and then started to find a little bit of form on the back nine, but just didn’t make any putts. Knowing all the birdies that were out there, you look at the leaderboard, but I’m still in a good position for going into tomorrow. I still gave myself birdie opportunities, just normal ones and the ones I hit really close I just didn’t make. So the putter went cold on me today, but I still hit good putts which is very frustrating.”
The two-time WGC winner Phil Mickelson shot a -6 under par 66 to be in third place alone on -15 under par, his compatriot Bill Haas, Ernie Els and Ian Poulter are a shot further back on -14 under. American Brandt Snedeker leapt 31 places on the leaderboard, to be at – 13 under par, after his record round. Tomorrow is going to be an exciting event, could someone shoot a 59 to win this event, I think the possibility certainly exists.