Alvaro Quiros stays on course for eighth European Tour win in Morocco
By Keith Jackson
Last Updated: 22/04/18 7:14pm
Alvaro Quiros birdied the final hole to reclaim a one-shot lead after the third round of the Trophee Hassan II in Morocco.
Quiros battled hard throughout the day to stay in contention as he mixed three birdies with four bogeys to slip into a four-way tie at the top as he approached the par-five 18th.
But the powerful Spaniard found the heart of the green with an excellent second and safely two-putted from 40 feet to salvage a level-par round of 72, getting him back to where he began the day on seven under for the tournament.
The 35-year-old, whose win at last May's Rocco Forte Open was his first on the European Tour in five-and-a-half years, will take a slender advantage into the final round after European Tour stalwarts Mikko Ilonen and Alex Levy returned two of only eight sub-70 scores on day three.
Ilonen's 66 was the low round of the day as he recovered from a bogey at the first with three birdies in four holes from the fifth, and he picked up further shots at 11, 12 and 14 before claiming the clubhouse lead with his seventh birdie at the last.
The Finn was later joined on six under by Christiaan Bezuidenhout, who bogeyed two of the first three holes before heading back up the leaderboard with three birdies over the next four.
The South African cruised home in 33 to post a high-quality 68, while Levy appeared set to surpass the top two when he got to seven under with his fourth birdie of the round at the 15th.
But Levy, who needs a strong summer to force his way into the reckoning for a Ryder Cup debut on home soil in the autumn, made his only mistake of the round at the 17th and failed to birdie the last for the third day in succession as he settled for a 69.
Bezuidenhout's compatriot Erik Van Rooyen made it a four-way share of second when he holed for birdie on 18 to card a 71, while Jeunghun Wang rolled in a great putt for a closing eagle which saw him sign for a 67 and lifted him to five under alongside Canada's Austin Connelly (71).
Andy Sullivan jumped to three under after he continued his recent encouraging form with a four-birdie 69, and the charismatic Englishman shares 12th place with Bradley Dredge after the Welsh journeyman laboured to his second straight 73 having opened the week with a 67.