Levy slips after fine start

p36663Sport-10-1

Published: Saturday 25th April 2015 by The News Editor

Comments (0)

Defending champion Alexander Levy squandered a brilliant start to leave the destiny of the Volvo China Open wide open heading into Sunday’s final round.

Levy threatened to take a stranglehold on the event when he birdied his first four holes at Tomson Shanghai Pudong Golf Club to storm into the lead on 11 under par.

However, those would prove to be his last birdies of the day and bogeys on the fifth, 14th and 15th meant the 24-year-old had to settle for a third round of 71 and a share of the lead with England’s David Howell and Chinese pair Li Hao-tong and Wu Ashun on eight under.

“I started really well but after that I made a few mistakes,” Levy admitted. “On the back nine I was a little nervous because I was aggressive on my putts and made a few mistakes but I still enjoyed the day and it’s nice to be in this position for the last day.

“It’s three months since I played good golf and it was a shame for me not to qualify for the Masters. Now I am back into a good position which is nice and I like this feeling.

“The low scores came without the wind in the morning so to shoot six or seven under in the afternoon was very tough. But tomorrow I know there is more wind and it will be more difficult and you will need to use your head.”

Li, 19, who lost out in a play-off for the Shenzhen International on Sunday, recovered from a bogey on the second with birdies at the fourth, sixth, seventh and ninth to delight the home crowd with a 69.

“I hit some great shots today and really enjoyed it,” the world number 125 said. “If I play well on the front nine in the final round the back nine will be very tough, a lot of pressure. But I will still play my game and enjoy it.

“I’m getting a lot of experience and starting to enjoy being in this position.”

Howell followed six straight pars with five birdies in seven holes from the seventh to boost his hopes of a first victory since the Dunhill Links Championship at St Andrews in 2013.

“It was a very nice day for me,” the 39-year-old former Ryder Cup player said after a 68 which featured just one bogey when he failed to get up and down from a greenside bunker on the 14th

“I felt like there was a score to be had out there and I adapted to the conditions much better than I did yesterday, when I struggled with the comparative softness of the course. I knew what to expect today, and took advantage.

“I really got it going nicely around the turn. I had a few chances early on which I didn’t take, but I managed to stay patient and eventually the birdies came.”

Sweden’s Magnus A Carlsson, England’s Seve Benson, Thailand’s Prom Meesawat and Scotland’s Richie Ramsay were all on six under, with Belgium’s Thomas Pieters another shot back and overnight leader Julien Quesne four under after struggling to a 76.

Ramsay, who was named European Tour player of the month for March on Friday after his win in the Hassan Trophy, said: “When you’re down the stretch that’s when the pressure comes on and that’s when I love it.

“Obviously with the win recently I know how to deal with it and even if things aren’t going well I know how to deal with it, which is probably the most important thing; you’ve got to grind through that. I’m looking forward to the back nine on Sunday.”

Published: Saturday 25th April 2015 by The News Editor

Comments (0)

Local business search