Schwartzel moves into contention in Dunhill Links

Charl Schwartzel fired a superb 66 on the Old Course at St Andrews on Saturday and moved into contention ahead of the final round of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.

Meanwhile, 2010 Open champion Louis Oosthuizen lies third ahead of the final 18 holes, after a three-under-par 69 on the Old Course.

Fellow countryman Jaco van Zyl is one shot behind, tied for fourth, and reigning Masters champion Schwartzel is two shots further back.

At the top of the leaderboard, Michael Hoey led an Irish takeover after shooting a third round 66 at Carnoustie to go to 18-under-par and open up a three-shot gap over compatriot Graeme McDowell.

Oosthuizen, who lifted the famous Claret Jug when he won his only major at the Open last year, wil l be aiming to lift a second trophy on the Old Course tomorrow. Oosthuizen said: “I was disappointed with my round. I hit the ball well but couldn’t make a putt. With the greens being a little bit softer, and a little bit slower, I just struggled to hit the lines right and the speed right. Hopefully it will improve tomorrow. I think it is going to be difficult catching Michael (Hoey) but it always depends how you start, if you start off well, you never know.”

Schwartzel, following a stunning six-under-par 66 on the Old Course, is feeling confident ahead of the final round. He said: “I think I have a chance tomorrow, and I said before the start today that I thought 20-under-par would be the target for a possible winning score. I’ll still stick with that and six-under-par today gives me a chance of getting to 20-under if I go very low tomorrow. It’s possible. I was very happy with my 66 today. There were six birdies, including one at the 17th which is al ways nice. I hit a driver and seven iron to about 20 feet there, and made a nice putt.”

Oosthuizen and Schwartzel, playing in the Team Championship with brother Rikus and father George respectively, both narrowly missed the cut, finishing joint 28th on 19-under.

South African golfers Alex Haindl, the Open de España champion Thomas Aiken and major winner Ernie Els will also play in the final day of the professional competition.

The prestigious Alfred Dunhill Links Championship is played over three of the world’s best known and respected links courses – the Old Course at St Andrews, the Championship Course at Carnoustie and the highly regarded Kingsbarns Golf Links.

The Championship has a unique format. With a prize fund of US$5 million, it incorporates two separate competitions – an individual professional tournament for the world’s leading golfers and a team event in which they are paired with some of the most celebrated amateurs.

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