Jan 28, 2017: Yusaku Miyazato of Japan posted a third round even-par 71 in blustery conditions to maintain his lead at the US$750,000 Leopalace21 Myanmar Open on Saturday.
India’s Shubhankar Sharma and Shiv Kapur remained firmly inside the top 20. The two were lying tied-11 and tied-18 respectively at the end of the third round.
Shubhankar carded 5 birdies at the 5th, 9th, 10th, 12th and 14th holes. He also conceded three bogeys in his score of two-under 69.
Shiv Kapur scored one-over-72 with only birdie at 4th hole. He dropped shots at the 10th and 17th to close at T18 with a four-under-209 total through 54 holes.
Miyazato, a three-time winner in Japan, fought hard to stay on top the leaderboard on 11-under-par 202 as K.T. Kim of Korea trailed by one shot after holing a birdie on the 18th hole for a 68 at the Pun Hlaing Golf Club.
Miyazato, who led by three shots at the start of the day, sank a huge curling eagle putt on the par-five fourth hole to extend his lead before dropping his first bogey of the tournament on hole eight.
His only birdie came on the 14th hole which was sandwiched between two bogeys but the older brother to LPGA star Ai held on to his lead as he searches for a first win outside of Japan.
Kim, a 13-time winner in Japan, was enjoying a hot run of five birdies in 12 holes before losing focus in the humidity as he bogeyed holes 13, 14 and 16.
Qualifying School graduate Sihwan Kim, the last player to enter the elite field, made full use of his playing opportunity as he carded a 68 to trail by two shots and stay in the hunt for a first Asian Tour victory.
Todd Sinnott of Australia, also an Asian Tour rookie, equalled the course record of 64 as he tied in fourth place alongside Carlos Pigem (68) of Spain and Miguel Tabuena (69) of the Philippines on matching 205s. They trail Miyazato by three shots.
Interesting facts of the day:
- Yusaku Miyazato holed a huge left to right 30-foot eagle putt on the par-five fourth hole. He was only the second player after Todd Sinnott to hole an eagle in round three.
- Miyazato has won an event in Japan every year since 2013. If he wins tomorrow, it will be his first victory outside of Japan.
- K.T. Kim is a multiple winner in Japan but outside of the country, he has only tasted victory in Korea and Thailand.
- Sihwan Kim was the last player to qualify for the Leopalace21 Myanmar Open. The Korean-American is the second player alongside Todd Sinnott to be ranked inside the top-five and fighting for a first career win.
- Sinnott drove the ball to 11-feet on the par-four 357-yard 14th hole and sank the eagle putt. It was his second eagle in the tournament.