Jamshedpur: Jyoti Randhawa carded a three- under 68 in the penultimate round of the 10th TATA Open to establish a three-stroke lead.
The 39-year-old`s total reads nine under 204 after the third round. Randhawa (71-65-68) climbed from overnight second position to the top of the leaderboard as a result of his bogey-free round.
Sri Lankan Mithun Perera fired a third successive 69 to end the day in second place at six under 207.
Randhawa, former Asia number one, picked up his first birdie of the day on the second hole. He then made a good up and down for birdie on the 12th.
Playing in Jamshedpur for the first time, Randhawa added another birdie on the 13th where he landed his approach shot within four feet of the pin. He did not drop a single stroke in the round thanks to his accurate hitting and consistent putting.
"It was a solid round. I`ve been swinging well and am satisfied with the way I`m putting. I didn`t leave any short putts today. My aim will be to keep up the momentum in the final round in order to stay ahead. I`m enjoying the challenge of playing at two different courses this week. This is something I`ve never done before," Randhawa said.
After the cut was made at three over 145 on Friday, the field was restricted to 51 professionals and one amateur.
Mithun Perera’s (69-69-69) two under 69 on Saturday propelled him from overnight tied fifth to second place. The Colombo-based professional made two birdies in round three including one on the fifth that came as a result of a chip-in from the edge.
Perera is the only player in the field besides Randhawa who has shot three under par scores.
Vinod Kumar’s (68-76-64) seven under 64 was the best score of round three. Vinod is now placed in tied third at five under 208 along with Vijay Kumar (71-70-67), Gurbaaz Mann (69-71-68), Vikrant Chopra (67-72-69) and Vivek Bhandari (70-65-73).