Saturday, September 08, 2018

Matus and Papadatos share narrow lead at Bridgestone Challenge

Stanislav Matus and Dimitrios Papadatos share a one-shot lead at the Bridgestone Challenge ahead of Sunday's final round at Luton Hoo Hotel, Golf and Spa.
The pair hold a one-stroke advantage over Tom Lewis and Sebastian Soderberg after carding rounds of 66 and 70, respectively.
Matus, searching for his first European Challenge Tour title, started the day four shots behind Papadatos but added his five-under-par score to his previous rounds of 61 and 69 to lead the Bridgestone Challenge once again.
A bogey-free four under par front nine saw the Czech join the leaders at the top before he made another gain on the par four 11th to take the outright lead. Having driven the green on the 18th the 29 year old had two putts to extend his advantage by at least one stroke, however, a disappointing three-putt saw him finish the day on 17 under par.
After his third consecutive sub-70 round of the week, Matus believes his game is going in the right direction ahead of Sunday’s showdown.
“I got off to a hot start. I was four under par after the front nine and I was feeling really good,” he said.
“On the back nine I made a few mistakes and maybe the putter was a little stiff. I tried to go for an eagle on the last hole, but my putt went too far, and I didn’t see the downhill slope and ended up three putting. It hurts a little but I’m at the top of the leaderboard and in a good position for tomorrow.
“I’m very pleased to be at the top but I’m trying to hang loose and stay in the moment and play one shot after another. Hopefully I can keep the momentum going into tomorrow. I’m excited right now but I’m trying not to put too much pressure on myself.”
Papadatos was unable to rekindle his form from Friday as he signed for a one under par round of 70 but remains in first place alongside Matus.
The Aussie started slowly with two bogeys and two birdies on his front nine, dropping another shot on the par four 14th, only his fifth bogey of the week. With two holes to play, the 27 year old was two strokes adrift of the Czech but came home strong with birdies on the 17th and 18th to return to the top.
With 18 holes still to play and the chance to claim his second Challenge Tour title of the season, Papadatos is confident he can get the job done, even if it means calling upon his winning feelings from Portugal.
“It was nice to birdie 17 and 18 as that tidied up the round,” he said. “I was pretty average today and my ball striking wasn’t quite there, plus I missed quite a few putts as well.
“It was tough today, but you can’t win the tournament on a Saturday, so when I wasn’t playing well I had to make sure I was staying in a good position. "Obviously, it would’ve been nice to extend my lead, that was the goal, but I wasn’t having a great day. I had to hang in there and make sure I stuck it out over the last few holes to give myself a good chance for tomorrow.
“I’ll draw upon the memories of Portugal for tomorrow and go out there and do whatever it takes to try and get another trophy.”
Englishman Lewis carded a round of 67, four under par, to join Sweden’s Soderberg in second place after his bogey-free six under par round of 65. They both lie one stroke behind the leading duo while last year’s runner-up Nicolai von Dellingshausen also shot six under par to lie three shots off the pace. He is one stroke ahead of Nick Cullen, Jack Senior and Matt Ford, who shot a career-low round of 62, nine under par, to share sixth place.

Scores after round three:
 par 213 (3x71)
 196 S Matus  (Czech) 61 69 66, D Papadatos (Australia) 63 63 70 
 197 T Lewis (Eng) 63 67 67, S Soderberg (Swe) 63 69 65 
 199 N Von Dellingshausen  (Ger) 66 68 65
 200 J Senior (Eng) 67 69 64, N Cullen (Australia) 66 66 68, M Ford (Eng) 70 68 62
 201 N Kimsey (Eng) 66 70 65, M Armitage (Eng) 70 65 66, M Iten (Switz) 65 71 65, T Sloman (am) (Eng) 63 73 65
 202 R Roussel  (Fra) 67 70 65, J Huldahl (Denmark) 65 67 70, R Langasque  (Fra) 67 67 68, H Dobson (Eng) 69 67 66 
 203 J Brun  (Fra) 64 69 70, T Murray (Eng) 68 69 66, C Sharvin (NIre) 71 66 66, B Stow (Eng) 64 68 71, J McDonald  (Sco) 66 69 68 
 204 R McGowan  (Eng) 69 67 68, T Linard (Fra) 67 67 70, E Di Nitto  (Ita) 69 65 70, R MacIntyre  (Sco) 67 68 69
 205 N Geyger (Chile) 68 69 68, D Coupland (Eng) 70 66 69, M Lundberg (Swe) 68 71 66
 206 J Wrisdale (Eng) 68 69 69, G Porteous (Eng) 70 67 69, P Figueiredo  (Portugal) 69 70 67, B Evans  (Eng) 69 69 68, J Mullen  (Eng) 69 68 69, J Abbott (Eng) 68 69 69, O Stark (Swe) 68 68 70, A Wennstam (Swe) 65 71 70, M Ovesen (Denmark) 67 71 68, M Fenasse (Fra) 68 67 71, C Hill (Sco) 71 66 69, J Carlsson (Swe) 65 74 67, A Arnaus (Spn) 72 67 67, A Wilson (am) (Eng) 67 71 68
 207 J Girrbach (Switz) 70 69 68, J Doherty  (Sco) 72 67 68, J Lima  (Portugal) 65 72 70, T Tree (Eng) 68 70 69, M Schmitt  (Ger) 70 69 68, E Cuartero Blanco  (Spn) 72 67 68, R Saxton (Netherlands) 66 72 69, D Foos (Ger) 72 66 69, R Hjelm (Denmark) 67 67 73, S Locke (Sco) 66 68 73 
 208 B Robinson (Eng) 71 67 70, M Orrin (Eng) 66 73 69, P Maddy (Eng) 70 69 69, S Henry  (Sco) 69 70 69, B Easton (SAf) 71 67 70, J Galbraith  (NIre) 69 70 69
 209 J Maw (Eng) 71 65 73, H Leon (Chile) 72 67 70
 210 R Kellett (Sco) 69 69 72, J Van Der Vaart (Netherlands) 68 71 71, J Rutherford (Eng) 67 70 73
 211 D Perrier (Fra) 65 73 73, J Marin (Spn) 69 70 72, J Lando Casanova  (Fra) 70 69 72
 212 C Braeunig   (Ger) 70 69 73 
Retired: P Mejow (Ger) 66 72 ret. 

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