Fabulous Frittelli on course for maiden win in Beijing


Dylan Frittelli has a great chance to claim his maiden European Tour title at the China Open after surging into a three-shot lead with another fabulous display at Topwin Golf and Country Club.

Having moved into a tie for second on Friday with a course-record-equalling 63, Frittelli shot 64 in the third round to leapfrog Pablo Larrazabal and reach 19 under.

Larrazabal could only manage a 70 and now trails by three, having led by the same margin at the beginning of Saturday, while Alexander Levy sits seven strokes off the pace in third after a 71.

Frittelli, who achieved his best European Tour finish to date when placing tied fifth at last week's Shenzhen International, combined eight birdies with 10 pars in a second successive bogey-free round.

There was a stroke of luck for the South African at the par-five 18th, when he pulled his second shot left only to see his ball ricochet off a grandstand and on to the green.

The leader duly capitalised with a two-putt birdie and will head into the final day having pulled clear of the field together with Larrazabal - a four-time winner on tour.

Larrazabal's penultimate round began in encouraging fashion, a birdie at the second briefly extending his advantage to four strokes.

However, bogeys at the fourth and seventh stunted the Spaniard's progress and Frittelli took full advantage by turning in 32 to lead by two.

Both men started the back nine strongly, Larrazabal birdieing the 10th, 11th and 12th, only for Frittelli to also pick up shots on the latter two holes.

Another gain then came Frittelli's way on 15 and Larrazabal bogeyed the next before the duo each birdied 18.

Levy was hampered by a seven at the fourth as he lost ground on the leaders, but Chris Wood shot 65 to climb up to fourth at 11 under, eight behind Frittelli.