Olesen builds big lead in $2.5m Ras Al Khaimah Championship

Danish player says hehit a lot more fairways which gave him the chance to be aggressive with the second shots

By Nick Tarratt, Khaleej Times Guest Golf Writer

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Thorbjorn Oleson will take a four shot lead into tomorrow's final round of the Ras Al Khaimah Championship at Al Hamra Golf Club. - Supplied photo
Thorbjorn Oleson will take a four shot lead into tomorrow's final round of the Ras Al Khaimah Championship at Al Hamra Golf Club. - Supplied photo

Published: Sat 27 Jan 2024, 6:41 PM

Last updated: Sat 27 Jan 2024, 11:10 PM

Thorbjørn Olesen surged into a commanding lead on ‘Moving Day’ at the $2.5 million Ras Al Khaimah Championship at Al Hamra Golf Club.

The Dane, a seven-time winner on the DP World Tour, carded a third-round 63 to advance to 22 under par at Al Hamra Golf Club.

Oleson told the media after his round: “I thought today I played a lot better (than yesterday). I hit a lot more fairways today, and that gave me the chance to be aggressive with the second shots. It was nice to find so many fairways. It was a great round again.

“I’ll play roughly the same. You have a guy like Rasmus behind you and you know anything can happen with his firepower. You have to keep focused, do your own thing.

“It’s never going to be easy but I’m going to try my hardest,” he added. “That’s a pretty good stat (six wins from seven 54-hole leads). I feel pretty comfortable in that position.

“There’s always going to be nerves, but it’s how you deal with it. I enjoy being in that position. That’s what you practice for as a little kid, to have the chance to win on a Sunday on the DP World Tour. It’s going to be a lot of fun on Sunday,” said Olesen.

“It would mean a lot. I have both my kids here and my wife (here)/ It’s nice to have them when you come off after a round and see the kids. It’ll be a nice evening having dinner with them.”

Oleson stands four shots clear of compatriot Rasmus Højgaard, with France's Frederic Lacroix two further back in third.

He began the day a shot off the lead but came storming out the blocks with birdies at the first, third, fifth and sixth.

A missed short putt on the seventh cost the 34 year-old a bogey but he tapped in for another gain at the par-five eighth to turn in 32.

Approaches to seven feet on the tenth and six feet on the 12th yielded further gains before he drained a 20 footer on the 13th and tapped in for a third birdie of the week on the par-five next.

Olesen had to visit the drop zone after a wayward second left of the green adjacent to the hospitality units at the last - but got up-down for a tenth birdie of the day to establish a commanding lead.

Leading UAE player is Joshua Grenville-Wood (UAE) in tied 12th place on 13 under par with rounds of 67, 68 and 68.

The final round will be played tomorrow (Sunday) with tee times from 7.15 am with the leaders out last at 12.05 pm with the threeball of Oleson, Hojgaard and Lacroix.

Leading Third Round Scores

(7,410 Yards, Par 72).

T. Oleson (Den) 69. 62. 63. 194.

R. Hojgaard (Den) 66. 64. 68. 198.

F. Lacroix (FR) 65. 69. 66. 200.

B. Stone (RSA) 64. 70. 67. 201.

M. Helligkilde (Den) 67. 68. 66. 201.

A. Hildago (Spain) 68. 67. 66. 201.


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