By NDINAWE SIMPELWE and SANDRA MWILA –
OLIVER Bekker shot four birdies and an eagle to end the day on six under par 67 to take over the leadership of the Zambia Sugar Open with a total score of 18 under par 201.
And Zambia’s sole representative Madalitso Muthiya shot a one under par 72 to improve his overall score to six under par 213 ahead of today’s final round.
Bekker, who has four titles on the Sunshine Tour, said he was confident of holding on to the lead and scoop the championship.
He said he was able to handle the pressure having been in similar positions before.
“I’m happy with my play today (yesterday) and I hope I can keep it going tomorrow (today). There is always pressure when you are in the lead, but luckily I have been in this position a couple of times and lucky enough to finish it off and get a win,” Bekker said.
Bekker was not anywhere near the top of the leaderboard in the first two rounds but after two birdies on the front nine and two more on the back nine together with an eagle, the South African dislodged overnight leader Stephen Ferreira who dropped to joint third on 12 under par 207.
He was kept under pressure by Jared Harvey who maintained second position on 14 under par 205.Despite maintaining second position, Harvey had a difficult day carding three bogeys but was saved by an eagle and two birdies to remain in contention for the top prize.
The final day promises to be competitive as over seven golfers still have a chance to close up on Bekker at the top.
Meanwhile, Muthiya said he played well despite having slow day which saw him finish on one under par 72.
He said his main aim was to play well today so that he could finish on a good position.
“Obviously nothing is impossible but you have got to see what the leaders do, you have to see where they finish. If still remains 13,14 or 15 under you never know what happens in the last round. But I don’t want to dwell on that, I just want to focus on playing well,” Muthiya said.
Muthiya started the third round on a shaky note with a bogey on the first and third holes but managed to recover on the seventh hole with a birdie.
On the back nine Muthiya improved his game and managed to shoot two birdies to end the round on one under par.