Solid Hansen takes the quiet route

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The Independent Online

Soren Hansen is hoping to make it eighth-time lucky after lining himself up for victory in the Dunhill Championship here. The Dane takes a one-shot lead into today's final round over Frenchmen Raphael Jacquelin and Gregory Havret after shooting a 65 to end the third round on 18 under par.

In a round which was by no means spectacular on a day where the fairways played long and the greens played soft, Hansen was solid enough to build on his first two rounds while some of his competitors faltered. The course saw a number of low scoring rounds as competitors soaked up the summer sun which broke the cloud for the first time this week.

Hansen quietly moved into the lead with a birdie on the 18th while attention was on his low scoring competitors. Hansen's round was bogey-free and included seven birdies. The last time the Dane was in this position was in the 2003 Dutch Open, where he was leading by a shot going into the final day only to lose by a shot to Martin Lafeber. He said: "I put myself into contention a lot last year - seven times I counted - and never really did it. I learnt a lot from it. In 2002 I was only really in contention four times and I won one, and did really well at The Open.

"You obviously think about it, what went wrong and what can you do to make it better and I've worked on it during the winter and I am confident going into the final round."

While some players may be looking for a good run of birdies in the last round, all Hansen wants is enough to scramble home. "You can't think that you will hit the ball as well in the last round as you have in the second and third round I don't expect to go out and play as well as I have in the last few days. You need a bit of a scramble on the last day and that is what I expect to do."

A shot the two Frenchmen behind sits German Marcus Siem on 16 under, with Bradley Dredge, of Wales, who carded a magnificent 63, in fourth on 15 under. Dredge believes he will have to almost repeat his round if he is to lift the championship. "I'm just going to go out thinking a bit longer term than just this tournament but, having said that, I'm pleased to be in the thick of things," Dredge said.

With a final round 66 at Erinvale last week to win the tournament, SAA Open champion Trevor Immelman cannot be discounted after posting a 64 to move into eighth place.