Fichardt Storms Clear at Saint-omer

  • Last Updated: June 18 2012, 6:19 BST

Darren Fichardt maintained his consistent performance to open up a commanding five-shot lead after the third round of the Saint-Omer Open.

Fichardt: Went clear in the tough conditions

On a day when many of the contenders struggled with the strong winds, the South African sank five successive birdies between the fifth and ninth holes to go out in an impressive 31.

Fichardt's back nine was a little more disappointing as he dropped shots at the 12th, 13th and 17th, but his third-round score of two-under 69 was enough to move him on to seven under for the tournament.

The 37-year-old, who carded 68 and 69 in the opening two rounds, admitted the conditions had made life difficult for everyone.

"I knew it would be a hectic day when we started," he said on www.europeantour.com.

"But it turned out to be absolutely brutal.

"The string of birdies on the front nine helped separate me from the rest of the field and it was just a question of hanging on on the back nine.

"The back nine was something else. I was having to smash drives just to reach the fairway. I definitely needed all my experience and patience today."

England's Simon Wakefield is the nearest challenger to Fichardt on two under. He carded two birdies against three bogeys to complete the course in 72.

Another Englishman, Gary Lockerbie, is among a group of three players tied for third on level par.

Lockerbie had six birdies but will be unhappy with double bogeys on the fourth and 17th which saw him post a score of 69.

A bogey-less round of 67 saw Mark Tullo join Lockerbie on par along with Dutchman Wil Besseling, who carded two-over 73.

Overnight leader Sihwan Kim had a third round to forget, however.

Having started the day with a one-shot lead, the South Korean mixed four bogeys, three double bogeys and a single birdie in his round of 81 to drop to four over for the tournament.

Collated third-round scores (Gbr & Irl unless stated, par 71):

206 Darren Fichardt (Rsa) 68 69 69

211 Simon Wakefield 67 72 72

213 Wil Besseling (Ned) 71 69 73, Gary Lockerbie 69 75 69, Mark Tullo (Chi) 78 68 67

214 Adam Gee 67 72 75, Pelle Edberg (Swe) 70 72 72

215 Mikael Lundberg (Swe) 73 74 68, James Heath 71 70 74, Alastair Forsyth 69 72 74, Simon Thornton 71 69 75, Andrea Perrino (Ita) 73 68 74

216 Thomas Norret (Den) 70 73 73, Charlie Ford 74 69 73, Magnus A Carlsson (Swe) 73 72 71, David Howell 73 70 73, Daniel Brooks 76 69 71, Guillaume Cambis (Fra) 75 71 70, Andreas Harto (Den) 72 74 70

217 Sihwan Kim (Nor) 67 69 81, Chris Gane 73 73 71, Bjorn Akesson (Swe) 75 72 70, Matthew Zions (Aus) 73 72 72, Julien Guerrier (Fra) 71 72 74, Raymond Russell 68 75 74, Jordi Garcia (Spa) 74 73 70, Federico Colombo (Ita) 73 70 74, Taco Remkes (Ned) 74 70 73, Reinier Saxton (Ned) 71 72 74

218 Jamie Elson 70 73 75, Carlos Aguilar (Spa) 72 73 73, Michael Lorenzo-Vera (Fra) 75 71 72, Justin Walters (Rsa) 73 68 77, Rafael Echenique (Arg) 74 72 72

219 Roope Kakko (Fin) 70 73 76, Stuart Davis 74 72 73, Fredrik Henge (Swe) 77 69 73, Klas Eriksson (Swe) 73 74 72, Gary Stal (Fra) 72 74 73, Rikard Karlberg (Swe) 75 71 73, Chris Paisley 71 76 72, Andrew Marshall 72 71 76, Alexandre Kaleka (Fra) 71 75 73

220 Andrew Johnston 74 69 77, Berry Henson (USA) 69 74 77, Edouard Dubois (Fra) 70 75 75, Steven Tiley 69 75 76, Ben Parker 76 71 73, Nicolas Meitinger (Ger) 75 70 75, Tyrrell Hatton 72 70 78, Raul Quiros (Spa) 68 74 78

221 Craig Lee 72 72 77, Christophe Brazillier (Fra) 77 69 75, Anthony Snobeck (Fra) 69 73 79, Lloyd Saltman 70 74 77, Joachim B Hansen (Den) 75 71 75, Andy Sullivan 70 71 80, Jean-Francois Lucquin (Fra) 71 76 74, Florian Praegant (Aut) 71 74 76, Benjamin Hebert (Fra) 75 72 74, Christopher Doak 75 72 74

222 Raphael Eyraud (Fra) 71 76 75, Alvaro Velasco (Spa) 75 72 75, Shiv Kapur (Ind) 73 74 75, Benn Barham 70 72 80, Espen Kofstad (Nor) 76 69 77, Maarten Lafeber (Ned) 74 72 76, Sam Hutsby 71 75 76, Daniel Denison 71 70 81, David Dixon 77 69 76

223 Colm Moriarty 69 77 77, Dominique Nouailhac (Fra) 74 73 76, Thomas Feyrsinger (Aut) 75 72 76, Matthew Southgate 73 73 77, Jason Knutzon (USA) 73 71 79

224 David McKenzie (Aus) 76 70 78

226 Johan Wahlqvist (Swe) 75 71 80

227 Carl Suneson (Spa) 72 75 80, Augustin Domingo (Spa) 74 71 82

228 Andrew Parr (Can) 74 73 81

230 Floris De Vries (Ned) 74 73 83