Kapur soars on an eagle, moves into top-10

Shiv Kapur shot a very steady three-under 69 and moved back into the top-10 at the end of the third round the Dubai Desert Classic golf on Saturday.

updated: February 04, 2008 18:02 IST
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Soaring on the wings of a brilliant eagle during the course of a flawless back nine Shiv Kapur shot a very steady three-under 69 and moved back into the top-10 at the end of the third round the Dubai Desert Classic golf on Saturday.

Also making a move upwards was fellow Indian Jeev Milkha Singh, who also shot a three-under 69 while Jyoti Randhawa floundered with a three-over 75.

Kapur, who briefly led the tournament on second day, is now seven-under 209 while Jeev is at four-under 212 and Randhawa is even par 216.

With Friday's strong winds disappearing Saturday, the scores were much better and making full use of it was Erne Els, who has already won three times here in Dubai.

Els - called 'Big Easy' - made a big move on third day when he shot a brilliant seven-under 65 with five birdies and an eagle. That helped him zoom to the top at 11-under.

Kapur had a sedate opening needing to wait till the fifth hole for his first birdie, but that was nullified by a bogey on eighth.

On the back nine, he exploded in sizzling form with an eagle on the tenth. It was his second eagle of the tournament after the one on the third in second round. Kapur added a birdie on the 13th and played the rest with steady pars.

"It was a steady round, though there could have been a couple of shots left out there," said Kapur, who has been finding a lot of fairways and greens in regulation.

And on the occasions he has missed the greens in regulation, he has been good at scrambling back for pars. "I am quite happy with my hitting and putting. And I hope I can carry that to the final day."

Jeev who was blown away by the strong winds on second day seemed to be in a hurry to make up with three birdies in a row from second to fourth. After a bogey on fifth, he added another birdie. But then the birdies ran out and he managed just one more on 17th but he also had a bogey on 14th.

"I started off very well, but just couldn't keep it going. But I will take a 69, though it could have been a couple of shots better," said Jeev.

Randhawa had four birdies, but he also had five bogeys and one double. In one disastrous stretch from seventh, he had a double bogey and three bogeys.

Els raced to the turn in a flawless 33, two under, thanks to birdies at the third and fifth. On the back nine he hit a three-wood to five feet at the long 10th and slotted his putt for an eagle. Further birdies at the 11th and 13th took the South African to 10 and he added a final birdie on 17th to finish at 65 and 11-iunder for three rounds.

Els previously won the Dubai title in 1994, 2002 and 2005.

Defending champion Dubai-based Swedish Henrik Stenson started with three straight birdies and then had a bogey on fifth and a fourth birdie on 10th. He was three-under through 15 holes and was nine-under.

Tiger Woods after a great start in first round was once again struggling and was par for the day through 15 holes with Stenson. Tiger was eight-under.

Lee Westwood closed strongly with two birdies for a card of 68 and was eight-under for three days.