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Johnnie Walker Championship: Tommy Fleetwood and Ricardo Gonzalez share lead heading into final round at Gleneagles

Last Updated: 24/08/13 6:25pm

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Tommy Fleetwood: Bogey at the last cost him the outright lead

Tommy Fleetwood: Bogey at the last cost him the outright lead

Sky Bet

England's Tommy Fleetwood has a share of the lead heading into the final round of the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles as he looks to claim a maiden European Tour victory.

Fleetwood looked set to lead on his own after six birdies and an eagle in his first 16 holes, but a wayward tee-shot at the last ensured he carded the third bogey of his round to drop back into a tie with Argentina's Ricardo Gonzalez on 16-under-par.

However, having signed for a 67, the 22-year-old from Southport shrugged off the disappointment of that late bogey, insisting he was more than satisfied to have escaped having dropped just the one shot.

"The last hole does not really mean anything," Fleetwood said. "It's a tough hole and the way I hit my tee shot I did well to make six. I carved it into the trees and was lucky to have a chip out.

"If I hadn't I would have had to go back 100 yards and could have taken anything up to a 10. The way I played the first 17 holes was fantastic.

"I have been up there a bit this year and faltered a bit, so it's nice that I have kept my good golf going for three rounds."

Fleetwood was the youngest winner of the Challenge Tour in 2011, but only kept his card at the end of his rookie season on the European Tour thanks to a first top 10 of the year in the final event in South Africa.

The 22-year-old from Southport added: "I came off the Challenge Tour feeling I was the best golfer in the world, it felt very easy and I could not do much wrong. Last year I was still working hard but maybe not working on the right things.

Downward spiral

"The more you play poorly out here, the easier it is to get into a downward spiral. It was horrible, I didn't know that many people and it was very hard. At this tournament last year I'm not sure that I expected to be back on this tour this season, but I played great the second half of the season and have carried it on."

Third round leaderboard

(GB & Ire unless stated)
-16 T Fleetwood
-16 R Gonzalez (Arg)
-15 F Andersson Hed (Swe)
-13 S Gallacher
-13 B Wiesberger (Aut)

Click here for collated scores

Gonzalez took a one-shot lead into the third round after back-to-back 65s but was only able to manage a 70 on Saturday, despite recovering from a bogey on the first with birdies at the second, fourth and ninth.

Sweden's Fredrik Andersson Hed is one stroke behind the leading duo after a 66 on the Centenary Course which will host next year's Ryder Cup.

Scotland's Stephen Gallacher is just three off the pace alongside Austria's Bernd Wiesberger (72) after charging through the field with a superb 64, despite continuing to struggle with a "freak" injury which threatened his participation.

Gallacher injured his back when washing his car on Monday and has been receiving treatment all week, but still stormed home in 30 and said: "A 64 is very good considering I didn't have a warm-up.

"I hit two shots and had to go back in for more physio. The boys in the physio truck have been brilliant all week. They put a heat pack on it and gave me some tablets and said as long as I wasn't having pins and needles it was just a strain and I couldn't do any more damage."

England's Ross Fisher is four back along with Scott Henry of Scotland and Australian Brett Rumford, while the likes of Thorbjorn Olesen, Shane Lowry and Alvaro Quiros are part of a six-man group at 11-under.

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