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Live blog: 2012 Australian Open, Day 3

Yahoo!7 December 8, 2012, 11:01 am


Marcus Fraser is poised as the man to beat at -6 as the final two rounds get underway at the Lakes Golf Club.

Having overtaken overnight leader, John Senden, Fraser is the unlikely name at the top of the leaderboard after several big name contenders, including Englishman Justin Rose, stumbled on Day 2.

Other hot favourites trailing well behind Fraser include Australian Masters champion Adam Scott, and golfing legend, US-native Tom Watson.

It's shaping up to be a beautiful Sydney day, with not a cloud in the sky and just a slight breeze to contend with. Perfect playing conditions for the weekend.

We'll have live updates from 12pm (AEST) right until the final group is back in the clubhouse, so you don't miss any of the action.

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5.00pm

So at the end of Day 3 of the Australian Open John Senden holds the lead at -7, Justin Rose is two shots back in outright second with -5, and more than a handful of players are trailing behind them by just a couple of shots. It will be a huge day of play tomorrow. Join us again on Sunday for another live blog from 12pm (AEST)!

4.57pm

Well that's another bogey for Fraser, 76 for the leader at the start of play.

4.55pm

Final group wrapping things up on the 18th. The wind is ridiculous by now. Both Brendan Jones and Marcus Fraser leaving themselves with lengthy par putts.

4.50pm

Senden about to hand in his card. Getting a lot of attention from fans. He finished with a par, to confirm his 2 shot lead at -7. Do you think he will go on to win the tournament?

4.42pm

Justin Rose says in his post-round interview that the wind was a lot stronger than yesterday. He says he felt a little hard-done by because he was striking the ball a lot purer than his last round, but is ready for the "battle" that awaits tomorrow.

4.40pm

Jones and Goggin secure pars on the last to both finish at -2 ahead of the final day. But not before having to set and re-set their stance with the wind causing havoc when over the ball.

4.35pm

Steven Jones on the 18th now. Nice shot onto the middle of the green, leaves himself about 5m from the hole for birdie. His partner Matt Goggin finds the rough or maybe even sand, going short right. Tough spot, but well-frequented by players today.

4.26pm

Justin Rose misses his par putt and drops yet another shot. He'll card a 70 today and go into Sunday at -5. Senden now has a two-stroke lead. My what a difference a few holes make! just fell apart at the end there for Rose.


4.25pm

Tough day at the office for Kiwi Gareth Paddison. He bogeys the par 3 18th to finish with a round of 74 and sit at -1 for the tournament.

4.20pm

Justin Rose rescued his wide tee shot on the final hole with a nice chip shot leaving him 1m from the hole for par.

4.15pm

New leader! John Senden takes the outright lead at -7 after Justin Rose misses his par putt. Understandably, he looks furious with himself.

4.12pm

Fraser bogeys on the 16th. Drops back to -4. Just not his day today.

4.10pm

Rose barking "SIT!" at the ball. He landed it just over the bank instead of into it, and its darted past the hole and just over the edge of the green about 6m out from the hole. Oh dear. He's chipped it on and put it 2m past the hole. He's missed a decent birdie chance here.

4.05pm

Greens seem to be getting firmer. Rose's approach onto the 17th took a hard bounce and rolled all the way off the back and down the slope. Going to be a very tough chip from there.

4.00pm

Leader at the start of play, Marcus Fraser, comes up with a beauty! He catapults to outright third at -5 by holing a long, long 20m eagle putt from the front fringe on the 14th. Shot of the day surely!

3.56pm

Kieran Pratt, who finished at -4 for the tournament, said in his post-round interview that the wind felt like it was almost 50km/h at some points, with the balls checking hard into the wind, and club selection becoming more and more difficult off the tee.

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3.55pm

With his shadow over the hole and his pants flapping in the wind, Rose holds his nerve to make a par putt on 17 and keep the co-lead with Senden.

3.51pm

John Senden snatches a share of the lead tapping in a two-foot birdie putt to move back to -7 through 14 holes. Look out Rose, Sendo's coming!

3.50pm

Cameron Percy sets himself up for a nasty bunker shot on the 17th. Has barely a couple of metres of green to work with at the front, right and behind the hole. Gulp!

3.43pm

Final hole here for Kieran Pratt. Wind at his back but his club selection probably wasn't quite right to accommodate it. Pin in the middle of the green, and he's landed it at the back and it's rolled off to the fringe. Good up and down all he can hope for from there.

3.40pm

Senden hits it pure down the left-side of the fairway on the 502m par 5 14th for a good look in at the green. Will be expecting to get at least one back on Rose here. It's there for the taking!

3.34pm

Peter Senior finishes with a 69 today and in prime position for Sunday at -4.

3.31pm

John Senden knocks in another birdie to go to -6, still trailing behind Justin Rose who just sunk a gimme to stay at -7. What do you think the winning score will be on Sunday?

3.30pm

Andre Stolz taps in for par on the 18th. He cards a round of 71 and moves to -2 for the tournament.


3.25pm

Players really being tested over the ball on the greens as the conditions get more and more blustery. Such a tough game.

3.22pm

Geary looked like making a miraculous par at the 18th after a wayward tee shot. He put it a few metres from the hole with his recovery but his par putt was just a little too firm and glided past the hole. A bogey for him on the last.

3.20pm

Big miss from a few feet out from John Senden. Again, his putting being his Achilles heel. After that marvelous eagle, missing a par putt now means he drops back to -5 through 12.

3.10pm

Josh Geary in a bit of drama on the final hole. Sent it way left off the tee on the par 3. But he got a free drop because his stance was impeded by a pathway. With the ball beside some thick brush, he was very lucky his ball didn't land in any of that messy stuff. He has a clear look at the green, with a clean lie after the drop. Talk about catching a break!

3.06pm

Justin Rose butchered his approach shot on the par-4 13th. Sent his wedge shot to the right of the green, leaving him very little green to work with to recover. Luckily got it close enough to sink a makeable putt and maintain his one shot lead at -7 ahead of John Senden at -6.

3.05pm

John Senden makes that eagle putt!

3.00pm

Justin Rose is an R'n'B music fan. Who knew? Revealed to reporters that Bruno Mars is a favourite artist of his.

2.55pm

What a beauty from Senden on the 11th! Solid tee shot down the middle to set himself up nicely. After a bit of discussion with his caddy, he chooses the fairway wood and strikes it straight at the flag, through the breeze, over the water and lands it halfway up the green. A bit of check on the ball helped him out as the ball rolled to the bag fringe and back down the hill, funnelling back and finishing 1m from the hole. Holing this eagle putt would certainly do a lot for his confidence.

2.51pm

Stuart Appleby taps in on the final hole to finish with a 70 for the day's play. He's at -3 for the tournament, but unless the top of the field run away with it, he'll still like his chances at making a play for the title tomorrow. Partner Kyle Stanley also cards a 70 today.

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2.50pm

Amazing long putt from Matt Goggin on the par-5 11th. Had plenty of slopes and angles to deal with but backed himself and put it a foot from the hole. Problem is he misses the seemingly easy putt! He's absolutely spewing too. Easy par, becomes disappointing bogey.

2.42pm

Flags are really bouncing about in the wind now. Greens drying out in the sun and getting slicker too. Those two factors combined makes for a tough day for putting!

2.40pm

Justin Rose out of the fluffy rough takes the hybrid and calmly taps it down the hill on the par-5 11th. Leaves himself a foot from the hole for a birdie putt which he makes. John Senden struggling with the putter. Misses another great birdie opportunity on 10. He sets himself up well, just can't get that short game going at the moment!

2.32pm

Kieren Pratt takes the outright lead once again with a killer short game helping him when he needs it most. What's the saying? Drive for show, putt for dough! He's now -6 through 13. Definitely has a couple more birdie chances in the last five holes. At -4 for his round today, if he keeps sinking those putts he could put himself in a very good position for the a run at the Stonehaven Cup on Sunday.

2.30pm

Rose flies the water with a hybrid on the par-5 and lands his second shot on the green, but it rolls off the back. Lucky a sprinkler head stopped it, or he might have been in a bit of a pickle.

2.20pm

Justin Rose cranks one long with the driver, finds the fairway beautifully on the 11th. Meanwhile Kiwi player Josh Geary goes to -4 with a birdie on the 14th. Senden is still in it too, one shot behind the leaders at -4 after tapping in for par on the 9th. Could be a big back nine for him.

2.15pm

What do you think about putting with the glove on like Stuart Appleby is doing? It's an odd site. Most golfers will always take their glove off to putt, for better feel. But hey, if Nicklaus did it, it can't be that bad of an idea. After all he didn't do too badly in his career did he!

2.10pm

Kieren Pratt, what a surprise packet he is this afternoon! He sinks a five-foot eagle putt to take the lead at -6 through 11 holes with Rose hot on his heels at -5. Rose and Paddison both miss their birdie chances on the par-3 9th.


2.05pm

Paddison and Rose both make the green on the par-3 9th. Rose is about 3m from the pin, with what looks like a left-to-right down hill putt to come. Paddison is further out in the middle of the green, but a birdie chance, is a birdie chance!

1.55pm

Co-leader Justin Rose really finding a rhythm now. He's -2 so far today and building nicely for a solid back nine. If he finishes the day within a few strokes of the lead, you'd back him to be right up there and in the frame for winning the Stonehaven Cup tomorrow.

1.50pm

American Kyle Stanley leaves his eagle putt a bit shy of the hole on the par-5 14th, but gets his birdie. His partner Stuart Appleby similarly short but a tap-in birdie puts him at the top of the leaderboard at -5 with Englishman Justin Rose.

1.47pm

Queenslander John Senden gets one back with a confident up-and-down. Keep an eye on him. Always brings his A-game come the weekend in summer Aussie tournaments.

1.45pm

Jones misses! Being a bit precious and again the ball is left to sit frustratingly close, just on the edge of the hole. Has to keep his cool despite missing these chances.

1.42pm

Brendan Jones really has his radar going. Plum second shot onto the par-4 fifth at The Lakes leaves him a couple metres from the hole. He'll be putting to share the lead at -5 with Justin Rose who just sunk his birdie putt on the 7th to take the outright lead.

1.40pm

Greens getting a little trickier as the wind picks up. Matt Goggin misses an 8-footer for the outright lead and remains at -4.

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1.35pm

Josh Geary from New Zealand joins the lengthening list of leaders at -4. Brendan Jones misses his birdie putt on the fourth to take the outright lead. However you get the feeling that if he gets the putter working, he could run away with it.

1.30pm

Matt Jones sinks an eagle put on the 11th to be one shot behind the leaders at -3. Senden has been a bit all over the place today but seems to be finding the middle of the greens again. When he gets in a groove, look out.

1.26pm

Wowee. Terrible chip from Fraser. Has a 5m putt for par. And he makes it! Got to pull himself together now.


1.25pm

Marcus Fraser finds himself in some more strife on the fourth. He's 120m out from the green in a footprint and in the loose sand. Strikes it a bit heavy and leaves it well, well short. A monster chip shot for him coming up. Cracking under the pressure, or just bad luck? Hard to tell.

1.20pm

Fraser misses ANOTHER par putt, taps in for bogey. He's now at -4. Stuart Appleby over on the 12th makes his par putt to keep a share of the lead at -4.

1.18pm

A lot of players tied for third, and similarly for fourth and fifth. It's there for someone to make their move today for a run at the title on Sunday. But who will it be?

1.17pm

Matt Goggin now at -4 after birdying on four. A lot of players putting their hand up now!

1.15pm

Marcus Fraser hitting driver off the fairway on the par five third hole. Birdie here necessary for Fraser. Jones has located his ball after he pulled it way left off the tee. He's in some very loose sand, but has room for a swing and should be able to fly it over the trees and onto the fairway. And he's done it! He's back in play and leaves himself about 150m from the green. Still a chance for birdie.

1.13pm

Wollongong local Nick Cullen saves his par on the 3rd with a solid right to left putt.

1.12pm

Dear oh dear. Brendan Jones has hit his 3rd hole tee shot into the shrubs. This could get messy, folks.

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1.07pm

Marcus Fraser paying the price for missing the green. He misses his par putt and the lead is now shared between Jones and Fraser at -5.

1.07pm

Brendan Jones' birdie putt painfully bypasses the lip and sits mere centimetres above the hole. Taunting game, golf.

1.06pm

Marcus Fraser goes long on his second shot on the second hole, but recovers well from the bunker. He might sneak another par here, but he'll want to spend a lot less time in the sand if he's a shot at holding, and extending his lead today.

1.05pm

Stuart Appleby fires in a beauty to the 11th. His 3rd shot on the par five sets him up nicely for birdie. And he makes it! He's now at -4 after 11 and within 2 shots of the lead.

1.02pm

Tom Watson misses his par putt on the last, and finishes the day at +8 for the tournament. Scorecard of 78 today. Ouch.

1.00pm

Who do you think will be holding the Championship trophy on Sunday? Leave your answers int he comments below!


12.52pm

Excellent shot up the green from Fraser. He's put it half a foot from the hole for an easy tap-in par. Group partner Brendan Jones for a share of the lead slides his downhill putt to the left, taking a detour over the lip. Jones disappointed, should have made that birdie.

12.50pm

Tom Watson might not be in the mix this weekend, but he's still entertaining the fans while enjoying the walk. He sinks a wonderful long putt for birdie to be +7 for the championship.

12.48pm

Final group are out on the course. Brendan Jones finds the middle of the fairway for an easy wedge shot in. Produces a beautiful approach in the wind, leaves himself a few feet from the hole for a birdie. Tournament leader Marcus Fraser however hasn't started well. In the fairway bunker, with a bad lie and sand behind the ball he's hacked it out and it's finished just short of the green. Chip and run on the cards.

12.46pm

Nick Cullen leaves his birdie putt on the first short, tap in par, always take that. His partner John Senden knows it too. He's missed his par putt, and is +1 for the day. Has to make that up quick smart.

12.45pm

Senden leaves his chip shot short, won't be happy with that effort. Meanwhile Paddison is on fire! He's just birdied the second. Nerves? What nerves!

12.42pm

Oh dear! John Senden, from the middle of the fairway on the first sends his three-quarter wedge shot over the back. Very little spin, but the flag is also flipping about a lot more. Already causing some havoc.

12.40pm

Stuart Appleby listens to Hilltop Hoods and motivational audiobooks on his iPod before a game? What a bizarre combination!

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12.34pm

There you go son! Steven Jones shakes those nerves by sinking his chip shot from the back of the green on the first hole. Just what he needed!

12.30pm

Adam Scott misses a slippery downhill five-footer with his soon-to-be-illegal broomstick putter. He's dropped of the pace a bit with a couple of bogeys bringing him back to even par. Meanwhile on the 17th hole, Cameron Smith (AM) sinks another birdie to take his tournament score to -2.

12.25pm

Steven Jones found himself in a bit of a pickle after a wayward teeshot on the first hole. In the sand dunes on the right he was lucky to have a clean lie. Plucked it up and onto the green with ease, but the ball didn't check and he finds himself over the back, in the same place as Paddison. Looks a bit nervy. He needs to get that under wraps if he's going to make a move today.

12.19pm

Nice recovery from Paddison who flew his second shot on the first over the back. Chipped it a few feet from the hole and sunk the up and down for par. His partner Justin Rose cool as you like, knocks in his first birdie of the round to go to -4 after a nice approach left him 3m from the hole.

12.18pm

Next group is off and running on the first tee with Matt Goggin and Steven Jones. Jones has pushed it off to the right into the sand dunes.

12.15pm

The light breeze we're seeing now is expected to build into some strong winds for the afternoon. Will definitely make play harder for later groups. Top of 27 degrees for the day.

12.12pm

Great start from Adam Scott. Back to back birdies on the first two have set him up nicely for the afternoon's play at -2. Stuart Appleby has crept up the leaderboard tied for fifth at -3. He's through six holes. Still plenty of the top groups yet to tee off. Justin Rose and Gareth Paddison have just teed off. Rose smack bang in the middle with good view of the pin in the back right. Paddison in the rough on the lip of a bunker up the right.

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4 Comments

  1. leasa t01:40pm Saturday 08th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    May not being living in corowa any more but im still right behind you marcus...dig deep kiddo n keep playing n fighting

    Reply
  2. david01:18pm Saturday 08th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    At 12.42 did Senden really hit a 3/4 shot from the centre of a green. Did he take a big divot? Usually you have to drop from a green before playing your approach.!!!

    Reply
  3. david01:16pm Saturday 08th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Enjoying the blog. Pity there is not live streaming here. I think at the end it will come down to Justin Rose and Marcus Fraser. Class always rises to the top.

    Reply
  4. Glib12:39pm Saturday 08th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    It's exactly the same, year after year. Big stick, little ball, lots of grass with a few holes in it. Yawn.

    Reply
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