Romain Wattel (pictured by Getty Images) will take a three shot cushion into the final round of the KLM Open, after firing a six under par 64 at Kennemer Golf and Country Club in The Netherlands.

The 23 year old Frenchman, who is bidding for a maiden European Tour title, posted seven birdies in his opening 16 holes, with his only bogey of the day coming on the 17th.

Wattel is 14 under par for the tournament, with Scotland’s Richie Ramsay is his nearest challenger on 11 under par following a round of 65. Ramsay nearly aced the par three 11th hole for a second consecutive day, stopping his tee shot four feet from the pin, and there was also plenty of drama provided by Englishman Paul Casey, who need to hole his second shot on his final hole – the ninth – for the first round of 59 on The European Tour.

The former Ryder Cup player’s approach landed an inch from the cup, but then spun off the green and he could only make bogey, signing for a round of 62 and a ten under par total, leaving him four shots back in third place.

Defending champion, and home favourite, Joost Luiten made an impressive fightback from a quadruple-bogey nine on the second hole, carding eight birdies and one bogey in a round of 67. He is six shots adrift in a share of sixth position with Frenchman Gary Stal and Englishman Simon Dyson, the three-time KLM Open Champion.

Key player quotes

Romain Wattel: “I know that if I play good enough I will win one day. Maybe that will be tomorrow, maybe it will be in two years. The most important thing for me is to play some good golf. I’m not in the top 100 in the world so I can’t play the majors or the WGCs. So I’m just trying to improve my game week after week. I’m feeling confident, but even if I don’t win tomorrow it will have been a good week for me and I will try to keep doing the same, and maybe it will be next week, or the one after.

“The good thing for me this week has been the start. Normally I’ve not started the tournament well, certainly this year. I was in a good position after two rounds. This hasn’t happened very often to me. It is the first time I’ve led after three days, so it’s great. It won’t be easy tomorrow.”

Richie Ramsay: “My attitude pleased me today. It was good fun playing with Søren (Hansen) and Peter (Uihlein) today and I tried to treat it like I was playing with my mates and stay patient because it is a tricky golf course out there. I stay committed to my shots and executed them well. So five under is a good score.

“I nearly got a hole in one on 11 again. It was playing tough, a front pin and it was a seven iron to four feet, so three shots in two days on the hole is a good effort.”

Paul Casey: “I played some good golf today which was wonderful. To throw in a bunch of birdies was great. I wasn’t aware of the 59 chance until the ball skirted past the cup and rolled off the green. I didn’t realise I was close to a 59 until Gary, my caddie, told me. I’m ecstatic with the way I played. I’m not disappointed, other than bogeying the last. It’s an opportunity now to challenge for this golf tournament.”

Joost Luiten: “It is difficult mentally when you shoot a nine, but I turned a bad day into a good day and I still have an outside chance tomorrow. So that was all I could hope for. There is a bit of anger and frustration when you have a hole like that but you just have to accept it and say let’s turn it around, make some birdies and come back.

“I’m not in a bad position. Only Romain has really gone for it, and on a course like this, anything can happen. It was nice to show the crowd some birdies after what happened, as they’ve been great.”

Complete third round scores from the KLM Open (par 70)

 196 R Wattel  (Fra) 67 65 64,

 199 R Ramsay  (Sco) 69 65 65,

 200 P Casey  (Eng) 68 70 62,

 201 P Uihlein  (USA) 66 68 67, A Sullivan (Eng) 67 68 66,

 202 G Stal  (Fra) 66 71 65, J Luiten (Ned) 65 70 67, S Dyson  (Eng) 70 66 66,

 203 A Pavan (Ita) 66 70 67, M Kieffer (Ger) 67 68 68, E Pepperell (Eng) 69 68 66, T Pieters  (Bel) 70 66 67, E Molinari  (Ita) 66 66 71,

 205 P Waring  (Eng) 69 71 65, B Koepka  (USA) 69 66 70, M Ilonen  (Fin) 69 66 70, E Grillo (Arg) 72 66 67, J Hansen  (Den) 72 66 67, P Larrazábal (Esp) 68 62 75, R Rock (Eng) 73 67 65, J Morrison  (Eng) 73 67 65,

 206 N Colsaerts  (Bel) 72 68 66, T Aiken (RSA) 67 68 71, J Kruger (RSA) 73 63 70, W Ormsby (Aus) 70 69 67, R Karlsson (Swe) 69 69 68, C Lee (Sco) 69 69 68, M Jiménez (Esp) 71 69 66, R Derksen (Ned) 71 67 68, S Lowry  (Irl) 70 69 67, G Fdez-Castaño  (Esp) 71 69 66, C Wood  (Eng) 69 67 70, O Fisher  (Eng) 70 66 70,

 207 R Bland (Eng) 70 70 67, T Hatton (Eng) 68 67 72, M Korhonen (Fin) 71 69 67, R Jacquelin (Fra) 71 68 68, M Warren (Sco) 68 68 71, J Heath  (Eng) 69 67 71, J Hahn (USA) 71 66 70, N Elvira  (Esp) 71 67 69, C Doak (Sco) 69 70 68, D Im (USA) 67 70 70, J Carlsson (Swe) 70 67 70,

 208 P Harrington (Irl) 70 68 70, T Fleetwood  (Eng) 70 67 71, J Doherty  (Sco) 69 71 68, R Saxton (Ned) 71 67 70, A Gee  (Eng) 69 70 69,

 209 J Parry (Eng) 71 69 69, M Carlsson  (Swe) 68 71 70, T Lewis (Eng) 70 69 70, R Kakko  (Fin) 69 69 71, T Olesen (Den) 69 71 69, G Bourdy (Fra) 73 67 69, S Hansen (Den) 68 66 75,

 210 M Crespi  (Ita) 71 69 70, D Clarke (Nir) 73 67 70, D Howell (Eng) 68 69 73, J Quesne  (Fra) 70 69 71, N Fasth (Swe) 70 70 70, M Foster (Eng) 70 67 73, J Krietemeijer (am) (Ned) 71 69 70,

 211 A Kaleka  (Fra) 72 67 72, J Lima  (Por) 70 67 74, S Kjeldsen (Den) 70 70 71, W Besseling  (Ned) 68 72 71,

 212 D McGrane (Irl) 71 68 73, B An (Kor) 72 68 72, I Van Weerelt (Ned) 69 70 73, J Singh (Ind) 72 68 72, S Thornton (Irl) 68 69 75,

 213 J McLeary  (Sco) 67 72 74,

 214 G Bhullar (Ind) 70 69 75,

 216 D Huizing (Ned) 72 68 76, E Goya (Arg) 67 73 76,

Source: European Tour


Graham J Gordon, The Editor and Owner, GolfblogspotUK

The GolfblogspotUK website is owned and run by former Walker Cup player and European Tour card holder, Graham J Gordon, from Scotland, the Home of Golf. The owner is a golf fanatic who had to retire early from competitive tour play due to a back injury that required surgery. Graham wishes to share his knowledge and own experiences of the game with the GolfblogspotUK community and to receive your feedback on all aspects of the sport. Graham has been playing the game for over 20 years and received a great deal of pleasure from the sport. He has met several friends and visited many different places around the world, thanks to playing the great game of golf. Time to put a little back into the game to help others.

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