Date: December 15, 2007
Author: Steve Orme at the Australian Golf Club

Allenby, Nitties lead the way

Steve Orme at The Australian Golf Club, Sportal Two-time winner Robert Allenby and 25-year-old New South Welshman James Nitties share the lead at 10-under-par following an action-packed third round of the MFS Australian Open in Sydney. Allenby was solid in difficult conditions carding four birdies and a single bogey on his way to a 69 that has him perfectly poised to lift the Stonehaven Cup for a third time on Sunday. Nitties&apos only blemish came in the form of a bogey at the par-five first but the Novocastrian steadied to match Allenby&aposs 69. But the leading duo will not have things all to themselves on day four with Stuart Appleby a single shot in arrears courtesy of a four-under 68. Craig Parry is in a share of fourth after a rollercoaster round of 70 including five birdies and an eagle. Overnight leader Nick O&aposHern also sits two adrift after firing a level-par round – the left-hander led by three-shots early before a disastrous double-bogey at the par-five fifth. Brandt Snedeker leads the American contingent at minus seven, one clear of Aaron Baddeley who signed for a 69 to move well into contention. A band of eight players will start Sunday at five-under including Cameron Percy, Stephen Leaney and Terry Price, who all fired the day&aposs equal-low round of 67 in relatively calm conditions early on Saturday. Jason Gore is also at minus five following a solid 68, with Kane Webber and Paul Sheehan (69s), Ewan Porter (70) and Gavin Coles (71). Among seven players at four-under are Rod Pampling, Peter O&aposMalley and American Ryan Moore. Geoff Ogilvy will start Sunday at three-under leaving himself a tough ask if he is to break his winless streak as a professional on home soil, after a disappointing one-over-par round on moving day. Joint overnight leader Kim Felton had a day he&aposd rather forget signing for a 79.