Date: July 26, 2009
Author: Sportal and PA Sport

Fraser leads SAS Masters

Australian Marcus Fraser hopes to celebrate his 31st birthday on Sunday with the second European Tour victory of his career. Fraser, whose only previous success came in the 2003 Russian Open, moved from five behind into a one-stroke lead with a third round 70 at the SAS Masters in Malmo. The longest course in Tour history – Barseback measures 7,665 yards – took its toll on overnight leaders Ricardo Gonzalez and Lee Slattery. The Argentinian dropped to fifth place with a four-over-par 77, while Englishman Slattery, one behind at halfway, could do no better than 75. Fraser stands at eight-under, one in front of Slattery, Swede Martin Erlandsson and Dane Jeppe Huldahl, winner of the Wales Open at the start of last month. Fraser was still way off the pace after covering his first eight holes in one-over, but then came birdies at the ninth, 11th, 12th and 17th. “Just keep plodding along – that&aposs all the mindset was,” he said. “This is a tough course.” Last November Fraser lost a play-off for the Australian Masters to compatriot Rod Pampling, but he was excused for having his mind on other things. Wife Carlie was in hospital both before and after the round after showing signs of going into labour, but it was actually five more weeks before son Archie was born. “It was a bit scary on the day, but we came out of it well and he&aposs a cool little man.” Meanwhile, Australian Nathan Green remains in touch with the leaders at the Canadian Open after weather again postponed play. Players have only completed two rounds so far with Green firing a seven-under-par round of 65 to move to 11-under overall and just two shots off the lead. The 34-year-old hit four consecutive birdies to start his round and finished the day with nine, as well as two bogeys to lie in a tie for fourth place. Steve Elkington and Jason Day were the only two other Australians to make the cut, but are struggling in 35th and 47th place respectively. American Jason Dufner shot a brilliant nine-under-par round of 63 to move to the top of the leaderboard but it was Mark Calcavecchia who was in record-breaking form in Ontario. Heavy rain and lightning meant the whole field needed to complete their second rounds on Saturday and it was Dufner who fared the best as he moved on to 13-under. It could have been even better for the 32-year-old, who has never won a PGA Tour title, but he bogeyed the 17th having previously racked up eight birdies and an eagle. Jerry Kelly and Scott Verplank will begin their third rounds one behind on 12-under after both shooting 67s while Green and Peter Tomasulo of the US are on 11-under. A group of six players three off the pace includes Colombia&aposs Camilo Villegas, South African Retief Goosen and Martin Laird of Scotland. Calcavecchia was tied for 17th on eight-under after his 65, which included nine consecutive birdies from the 12th hole to the second – a PGA Tour record. That took the American to 10-under par but the gloss was taken off his achievement somewhat by bogeys at the fourth and eighth. Anthony Kim is usefully poised at nine-under while England&aposs Luke Donald, who finished tied fifth at the Open last weekend, comfortably made the cut on four under. John Daly, however, was among those to miss out, the colourful American struggling to a level-par 72 to finish at five-over. Third Round of the SAS Masters -8: Marcus Fraser (Australia) 72 69 70 -7: Martin Erlandsson 70 70 72, Jeppe Huldahl 72 70 70, Lee Slattery 67 70 75 -6: Ricardo Gonzalez 68 68 77, Marcus Higley 72 71 70 -5: Jean-Baptiste Gonnet 73 71 70, Pablo Larrazabal 69 71 74, Wade Ormsby (Australia) 72 72 70 -4: Alejandro Canizares 71 74 70, Oskar Henningsson 70 72 73 -3: Jamie Donaldson 71 72 73, Niclas Fasth 72 71 73, Joakim Haeggman 74 70 72, Sam Little 72 75 69, Christian Nilsson 72 71 73, Joel Sjoholm 73 72 71, Anders Sjostrand 72 69 75 Also: +1: Brett Rumford (Australia) 70 75 74 +2: Michael Campbell (New Zealand) 78 70 73 +4: Peter O Malley (Australia) 74 70 77 Canadian Open Round 2 -13: Jason Dufner 68 63 -12: Jerry Kelly 65 67, Scott Verplank 65 67 -11: Nathan Green (Australia) 68 65, Peter Tomasulo 65 68 -10: Martin Laird 65 69, Pat Perez 67 67, Camilo Villegas 63 71, Bob Estes 67 67, Retief Goosen 65 69, Kevin Na 63 71 -9: Tim Herron 67 68, Anthony Kim 69 66, Briny Baird 72 63, Y E Yang 69 66, Scott Sterling 67 68 -8: Michael Letzig 69 67, Mark Calcavecchia 71 65, Jimmy Walker 66 70 Also: -5: Steve Elkington (Australia) 68 71 -4: Jason Day (Australia) 70 70 -3: Aron Price (Australia) 72 69 -2: Greg Chalmers (Australia) 71 71 -1: Nick O Hern (Australia) 73 70, Steve Allan (Australia) 70 73 E: John Senden (Australia) 72 72, Peter Lonard (Australia) 73 71 +1: Matt Jones (Australia) 72 73 +8: Matthew Goggin (Australia) 73 79