Date: September 22, 2012
Author: Omnisport

Beck takes out hole in one

Australia&aposs Darren Beck snared a hole-in-one at the Asia-Pacific Panasonic Open on Saturday where Japan&aposs Masamichi Uehira fired a third-round score of six-under par 65 to claim a one-shot lead. Beck, who carded a third-round 70 to claim a share of eighth, managed the rare feat at the 11th hole while China&aposs Wu Ashun moments later matched his effort at the seventh. Thirty four-year-old Beck is the best placed Australian, four shots behind Uehira at Higashi Hirono Golf Club in Japan. Beck, whose game has improved since going for yoga lessons, was three-over for the day at the turn until his five-iron tee shot rolled into the par three 11th hole for his first ace in a tournament. He added two further birdies on 13 and 18 to stay in contention. “It was a great shot. I haven&apost been putting well so I wanted something close to tap in! It came off nice and I couldn&apost see where it landed but you could tell from the reaction of the crowd. “It was a bonus and I needed it. It came at the right time,” said Beck, winner of the 2009 Brunei Open on the Asian Tour. “Personally, I&aposm surprised I&aposm only four back with the way I played. That ace helped and it was good to birdie the last. I feel exhausted now! It was a real battle. In the past, I wouldn&apost have battled that hard but I guess things have changed.” The 65 was Uehira&aposs best score of the week as he catapulted up the leaderboard to 14-under par overall. But the local hope has Filipino Juvic Pagunsan breathing down his neck just one shot behind and another nine players just four shots off the pace. Pagunsan, the reigning Asian Tour number one, was leading for most of the round but dropped shots on 13 and 15 to settle for 67 at the Higashi Hirono Golf Club. Japanese Tomohiro Kondo, Koumei Oda and Masahiro Kawamura were a further shot back while overnight leader Hiroyuki Fujita posted a 70 to lie in tied sixth place on 202. Another Australian, Cameron Smith, is five shots off the lead after shooting 67 on Saturday. LIVE SCORES