After the third round of the South African Senior Open, defending champion James Kingston is six shots ahead of nearest rival Grant Muller after shooting a solid four-under-par 68 to lie 10under after three days.
The day’s play started one hour late due to foggy conditions in the Plettenberg Bay Valley. Kingston got off to a slow start with one-over after two holes. However, he clawed his way back with back-to-back birdies at holes nine and 10. A topsy-turvy round led to a double-bogey on the 12th, but he turned it around with an eagle on the par-four 14th, the second time this week that Kingston eagled the hole. This seemed to settle things with him finishing with birdies on holes 16 and 18, where he had a great bunker shot.
“From nowhere I made a terrible mistake with the double-bogey on the 12th. Today wasn’t the best I struck the ball this week but I got a good feeling on the back nine,” Kingston said.
Placed second following a round three score of 70, Muller had an up-and-down round with three birdies and a bogey. On heading into the final day, Muller added, “It was great to play with Chris Williams and Rodger Wessels who I’ve looked up to for many years. It’s going to be a tough call to stay in touch with James being six shots ahead of me, but I will give it my best shot.”
Williams moved up the leaderboard to third and was heading for a good round with three birdies on the first nine, until he made a double-bogey on the 15th. Commenting on the conditions Williams said, “The pin placings were tricky and the greens were quicker, but fortunately there was not too much wind.” He finished on a one-under-par 71.
The final day will be a fitting climax to the most important event on the Sunshine Senior Tour calendar, which wasn’t played last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.