KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 10 (Bernama) — Local pro Ben Leong continued his consistent form by carding a two-under-par 70 to retain his lead after the third round of the PGM Sabah Championship, on Friday.
Leong remains the man to beat with his eight-under-par 208 three-day total, where he leads by two shots over American Sam Gillis who fired a 67 to take second place and Japan’s Shinichi Mizuno in third place following a 70 at the RM225,000 Asian Development Tour (ADT) event held at the Sabah Golf and Country Club in Kota Kinabalu.
The 32-year-old had a slow start, dropping a shot on the fifth hole after missing a short putt to save par.
He then shrugged off his frustration and bounced back with birdies on the ninth, 16th and 18th hole.
“I hit a good shot off the tee on hole five but I just misjudged the wind so it ended up being short of the green, then I missed a three-footer for par. I was pretty frustrated but I kept telling myself to hang in there.
“I gave it a 100 per cent on every shot today. Didn’t matter if it was for birdie or par or bogey. I was narrowing down on my targets and stayed focused over each shot,” said Leong as quoted in the ADT official website, www.asiandevelopmenttour.com.
The one-time Asian Tour winner has had two top-10 finishes this season, and stays on track to take home his second ADT title since his last win at the PGM Northport Glenmarie Championship in 2017.
“The pressure isn’t there because my target is to build up momentum before I play in Korea (Asian Tour) in September. Heading into the final round, I’m going to stick to the same thought process and just stay in the moment,” he said.
Meanwhile Gillis, who is in contention for the first time since he started plying his trade on the ADT this year, fired a bogey-free round highlighted by five birdies to give himself a shot at claiming his maiden ADT title.
“I just hit it well today and was giving myself a lot of opportunities. Especially on the front nine I felt like it would have been a lower score if I didn’t miss some of the short putts. But I made a couple of good saves like on hole 17, I chipped in for par. I’m excited to be in the final group tomorrow and will give it my best,” said Gillis.
LEADING THIRD ROUND SCORES:
208 – Ben Leong (MAS) 69-69-70;
210 – Sam Gillis (USA) 72-71-67;
211 – Shinichi Mizuno (JPN) 71-70-70;
215 – Oskar Arvidsson (SWE) 78-68-69, Jeremy Wendelken (USA) 72-70-73;
216 – Brett Munson (USA) 73-73-70, Greg Moss (USA) 72-72-72, Johnson Poh (SGP) 74-68-74;
217 – Cody O’Toole (USA) 73-73-71, Jesse Schutte (USA) 74-72-71, Varanyu Rattanaphiboonkij (THA) 73-70-74.