Date: November 25, 2017
Author: Martin Blake @ The Australian

3.30 UPDATE: Herbert double sees Day join lead


Jason Day and Sweden’s Jonas Blixt are pouring the pressure on young Australian professional Lucas Herbert as the Emirates Australian Open approaches the end of its third round at The Australian today.

Herbert, 21, from Victoria and just two years into his professional career, was two shots clear when he made a birdie at the tough, par-four eighth hole today, and still two ahead of Day as he stood on the tee at the par-three 11th hole.

But the man from Bendigo in central Victoria tugged his tee shot long and left at the 172-metre hole and it disappeared into long grass and native vegetation behind the big gallery beside the green.

Although spectators saw where it had entered the mulga, Herbert and an army of assistants could not find the ball in the allotted five minutes of digging and ferreting.

Returning to the tee Herbert could not avoid a double bogey five and suddenly he was sharing the lead with Day, who made par at his first 11 holes of the day.

Through 11, Day and Herbert were equal-leaders at eight-under par, with Blixt, the US Tour player, rattling around in 66 to reach seven-under overall.

Queenslander Cameron Smith is next at six-under through 13 holes but the Herbert calamity brings a lot of players back into the mix, including world No. 2 Jordan Spieth, who birdied the final hole for a one-under par 70 to reach two-under par, just six shots from the lead.

Japanese amateur Takumi Kanaya has the best round of the day so far, a 65.

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