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Warren among the leaders in Doha
23 Jan 2015 15:03
Scotland's Marc Warren was one of four players to claim a share of the lead heading into the final day of the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters.
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Warren shot a five-under-par third-round 67 in Doha to join Branden Grace, Emiliano Grillo and Bernd Wiesberger at the top of the leaderboard on 13 under.
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England's Eddie Pepperell was among the chasing pack after shooting a superb 65 to finish the day on 11 under alongside Alejandro Canizares and George Coetzee.
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Another Englishman, Oliver Fisher, was alone in eighth on nine under after carding 69.
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Ireland's Peter Lawrie, who had played himself into contention with a second round 68, had a disappointing day, shooting a 73 with two bogeys and just one birdie to leave him eight shots off the pace. Damien McGrane and Michael Hoey sit on -2 after they both claimed rounds of 74 today.
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Warren's only blemish came as he missed a short putt to bogey the 14th but he responded with back-to-back birdies at the 15th and 16th to maintain high hopes of a fourth European Tour win.
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Warren told Sky Sports: "It was good, really solid today. I missed a few greens on the back nine but my short game held it together, with a few good iron shots coming in. Overall it was a really pleasing day."
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Grace bogeyed the third and fourth and hit further trouble when his tee shot at the fifth found the trees. But the South African somehow produced a superb recovery, despite not having clear sight of the green, to set up a birdie chance and provide the spark for a round of 68.
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Austrian Wiesberger had a steady day and birdied the 18th to record a 68 after a visit to the rocky rough had seen him drop his only shot at 16. Grillo, of Argentina, shot a bogey-free 67. Coetzee had a share of the lead after two rounds but fell back despite not dropping a shot in his 70. Canizares has not made a bogey in three days and maintained his progress with four birdies in his 68.
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But the round of the day belonged to Pepperell. A day after his 24th birthday, Pepperell sank nine birdies and held the clubhouse lead as he signed for his seven-under-par round. He was particularly impressive on the back nine, coming home in 31 with six birdies. He finished superbly by holing long putts on each of the last three greens.
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He said: "I hit the ball well - better than I had the first two days - but I also putted better. I holed a number of good-length putts - 16, 17 and 18, they were all putts over 15 feet and nice ones to hole."
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The day was not a memorable one for defending champion Sergio Garcia, however. The Spaniard slipped right out of contention by dropping eight shots in a dreadful back nine, including a triple-bogey seven at the par-four 15th. His 77 left him 12 shots off the lead.
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