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Golf roundup: Schwartzel builds 5-shot lead in Thailand

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Charl Schwartzel acknowledges the crowd after a putt during the third round of the Thailand Golf Championship on Saturday in Chon Buri, Thailand. (Getty Images)

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By The Associated Press
Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012, 8:08 p.m.
 

CHON BURI, Thailand — Overnight leader Charl Schwartzel of South Africa had a 4-under-par 68 on Saturday to extend his lead over Daniel Chopra of Sweden to five shots after the third round of the Thailand Golf Championship.

Schwartzel, last year's runner-up, shot three birdies and an eagle to go with a bogey for an overall 18-under 198 at the Amata Spring Country Club, staying on track to end a victory drought that stretches back to his Masters win in 2011.

Thitiphun Chuayprakong had a 71 for third place. Sergio Garcia of Spain was fourth, eight shots back, after a 68. Australian Scott Hend (69) is another shot back, followed by Japan's Masanori Kobayashi (73) at 208.

Masters champion Bubba Watson (71) and defending champion Lee Westwood (70) are 11 shots behind Schwartzel.

Australasia PGA Tour

In Sydney, Australian John Senden had an eagle and two birdies in a four-hole stretch on the back nine Saturday and finished with a 2-under 70 for a two-stroke lead after three rounds of the Australian Open.

Senden, the 2006 champion, had a three-round total of 7-under 209 in tough, windy conditions at The Lakes.

Englishman Justin Rose, who also shot 70, was in second place, followed by Australians Matthew Jones (69), Peter Senior (69) and Kieran Pratt (70) in a tie for third, three behind Senden.

Rose had two late bogeys to keep him from tying for the lead going into the final round. Like most players he struggled with the gusty conditions and was apprehensive about a forecast repeat Sunday.

Stuart Appleby (70), fellow Australian Cameron Percy (72) and American Kyle Stanley (70) are in a share for sixth, four shots behind.

Appleby briefly took the lead before a back-nine stumble, but was pleased to be within several shots of the lead.

Adam Scott shot 71 to put him in a group of nine tied at 214, five strokes behind. Included in that group was second-round leader Marcus Fraser of Australia, who shot 76.

Greg Chalmers was six strokes behind Senden after a 69 and was level with Geoff Ogilvy (70). American Tom Watson, the 1984 Australian Open champion, had a 78 for the second time in three rounds and made the cut.

European PGA Tour

In Durban, South Africa, Morten Orum Madsen made a late charge to match Tim Clark's 5-under 60 Saturday on a shortened course and shared the first-round lead at the rain-delayed Nelson Mandela Championship.

South Africa's Clark had six birdies and just one bogey on the Royal Durban Golf Club in the European Tour season opener, which finally got under way after the first two days were washed out.

Norway's Madsen had seven birdies and two bogeys to join Clark at the top of the leaderboard in the first event on the 2013 Race to Dubai.

The course was adjusted to a par 65 from a par 70 and reduced by about 1,600 yards after most holes were under water Friday.

Franklin Templeton Shootout

In Naples, Fla., Kenny Perry and Sean O'Hair took a two-stroke lead in the Franklin Templeton Shootout, making birdies on the final six holes in better-ball play for an 11-under-par 61.

Perry and O'Hair were 19-under overall, two strokes ahead of first-round leaders Davis Love III and Brandt Snedeker at Tiburon Golf Club. Love and Snedeker had a 65.

Jason Dufner and Vijay Singh, Stewart Cink and Carl Pettersson, and Charles Howell III and Rory Sabbatini were tied for third at 15-under in the round delayed by heavy rain and wind for 1 hour, 50 minutes.

Defending champions Keegan Bradley and Brendan Steele shot a 64 to get to 13-under. The 12 two-man teams will play a scramble Sunday. The winners will split $750,000.

Ladies European Tour

In Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Shanshan Feng of China won the Dubai Ladies Masters by five strokes after shooting a 3-under 69 to capture her second Ladies European Tour title.

The sixth-ranked Feng had an eagle, two birdies and a bogey to total 21-under 267 at Emirates Golf Club.

Dewi Claire Schreefel of the Netherlands (69) was next. Caroline Masson of Germany (71) and Becky Brewerton of Wales (65) were nine strokes behind the leader. Masson needed to finish second to win the Order of Merit from Carlota Ciganda (68).

American Cindy Lacrosse (72) was 10 strokes back, while teenager Lexi Thompson (70) was 12 behind. Michelle Wie (69) tied for 19th.

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