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Last Updated: Saturday, 3 December 2005, 08:17 GMT
Monty maintains Hong Kong charge
Colin Montgomerie
GB&Ire unless stated
-11 Simon Yates
-9 James Kingston (SA), Colin Montgomerie, Martin Erlandsson (Swe)
-8 Wook-Soon Kang (Kor), Damien McGrane, Rick Gibson (Can)
Scotland's Simon Yates carded a course record to claim the lead after three rounds of the Hong Kong Open, but Colin Montgomerie is hot on his heels.

Yates fired a nine-under 61 to improve the Fanling Golf Club best of 63 set earlier in the day by Dutchman Maarten Lafeber and Damien McGrane of Ireland.

Yates' charge took him to 11 under, two shots clear of compatriot Montgomerie, who posted a second straight 66.

Montgomerie is tied in second with James Kingston and Martin Erlandsson.

Eight-time European number one Montgomerie seemed to be set for a 65 until he picked up bogeys on the 15th and 16th.

But he drilled his approach to two feet at the 17th and parred the last to end his third round at nine under.

"I had three flyers and dropped three shots on seven, 15 and 16 coming out of the rough. So that wasn't so good, but the rest of it was okay," said the 42-year-old.

I got four birdies at the end and made a nice round into a really great round
Simon Yates
"The main thing is I got myself in contention on Saturday night which was my goal.

"Simon got a great score so I'm going to have to do something quite low on Sunday."

Earlier, Yates enjoyed a dramatic reversal of fortune when grabbed a birdie hat-trick from holes two to four and then had four more in his last four holes.

On Friday, he saw a hole-in-one jump out of the cup on the par-three 12th.

"This is normally my unlucky shirt," said Yates, pointing to his red top.

"Every time I put on this shirt it's normally two or three over so I was going to dump it but it changed my luck today.

"I thought my luck was out when I hit the pin at eight but I came back on the last nine.

"It's perfect scoring conditions out there. It's not a long course but I was lucky.

"I got four birdies at the end and made a nice round into a really great round."

Meanwhile, Robert-Jan Derksen aced the 12th to earn a gold bar worth 8,600 from the tournament sponsors.


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