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Last Updated: Saturday, 19 May 2007, 16:57 GMT 17:57 UK
Harrington three ahead in Ireland
Padraig Harrington
Padraig Harrington recovered from a stumble on his front nine
GB and Ire unless stated
-4 P Harrington
-1 B Dredge, S Wakefield
Level R Green (Aus), L Oosthuizen (RSA)
Selected others:
+1 D McGrane, A Romero (Arg)
+2 R Jacquelin (Fra)
+4 L Westwood

Padraig Harrington will take a three-shot lead into Sunday's final round of the Irish Open at Adare Manor.

Harrington, aiming to become the first home winner of the event in 25 years, survived a front-nine wobble to shoot a one-under-par 71.

The Irishman is on four under par - three shots ahead of Bradley Dredge and Simon Wakefield.

Dredge hit a best-of-the-day 69 while Wakefield, who led early in Saturday's round, lost ground to shoot 73.

Australia's Richard Green (72) and South Africa's Louis Oosthuizen (73) are four shots behind Harrington while Ireland's Damien McGrane (70) and Argentina's Andres Romero (75) are a further stroke back.

Harrington, aiming to become the first Irish winner since John O'Leary in 1982, was one ahead at the start of play and made the perfect start with a birdie on the first.

Wakefield hit straight back with a birdie on the second but promptly bogeyed the next to leave Harrington two clear of the field.

However, on the testing course the lead quickly changed hands with a three-shot swing in the space of two holes.

Harrington bogeyed the short sixth and he dropped another shot at the next, despite donning his waterproofs to play a shot from the edge of the water.

Three shots is not enough of a lead where I can be at all complacent

Padraig Harrington

And when Wakefield birdied the seventh the 33-year-old from Staffordshire led by one on three under par.

However the momentum shifted again when Harrington holed from 15 feet for par on the 10th while Wakefield's par attempt failed to drop.

Wakefield suffered further bogeys on the 11th and 12th and Harrington's birdie on the latter hole put the Irishman two ahead.

A further birdie on the 17th after a superb approach to four feet means Harrington will be a hot favourite to land the title on Sunday.

Harrington was cheered on by a large gallery and he can expect even more home support on Sunday

"It was very exciting playing and I have to use that to my advantage when I need to and play it down when I need to.

"Three shots is not enough of a lead where I can be at all complacent. There's a lot of work to be done tomorrow."

Dredge's round was the only sub-70 score of the day despite the improved weather conditions from the opening two rounds.

"I don't feel as though I'm hitting the ball great but my short game is where I want it to be and that's what could help win," said the Welshman.

Irish Open leaderboard
01 Apr 07 |  Golf


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