Rio 2016: Rose surges ahead but Stenson still in the hunt


Justin Rose is 18 holes away from making history in becoming the first winner of an Olympic golf title since 1904 after a superb third round in Rio.

The Briton had trailed overnight leader Marcus Fraser by four strokes at the halfway point, but now holds a one-stroke advantage following a six-under-par 65, which took him to 12 under for the tournament.

Rose has elite company at the top of the leaderboard, however, in the form of reigning Open champion Henrik Stenson.

Stenson maintained the consistency he has shown throughout the week to card a second consecutive 68, going three under with a strong back nine having made the turn at level par despite an eagle at the fifth.

Fraser endured a disappointing day, registering a one-over 72 in which his sole birdie came at the 13th.

The Australian will aim to recapture the form that saw him take command of the early rounds, while two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson is in contention for a medal at six under.



Rickie Fowler gave himself a glimmer of hope of a medal as his seven-under 64 moved him to three under, six shots off Fraser in third place, but the most important round of the day belonged to Rose. 

The Englishman produced eagles on holes three and five having birdied the first, with further gains coming at the 12, 15, 16. The 2013 U.S. Open champion would hold a three-shot lead if not for bogeys at the second and the 14th.


Jaco van Zyl is unlikely to challenge for the medals, he finished his third round at two over, but he will always have fond memories of the Games after producing the second hole-in-one of golf's return to the Olympics.

Following up on Rose's effort at the fourth on Thursday, the South African produced a near-perfect tee shot at the eighth that rolled softly into the hole, dropping his club to the floor and dishing out high-fives in celebration.



"It is a feeling that will never go away, I pured it and got a result. It was great, especially the way I have been playing. Not much to reflect on golf-wise during the first three days, that is the cherry on the cake." - Jaco van Zyl on his hole-in-one.

"After playing well today I got myself some more sleeping time with a later tee time, so I'm looking forward to it [the final round]. It'd be nice to get off to a good start and give myself a chance to possibly podium." - A good night's sleep was the secret to Rickie Fowler's strong showing.

"I am sad it might be over, 18 holes and then we are no longer competing at the Olympics." - All good things must come to an end, but Bubba Watson does not seem ready for his OIympic experience to reach its close.