Parnevik's pointer

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The Independent Online
JESPER PARNEVIK, with a three-shot lead on the field, is hoping to become the first Swedish player to win a European Tour event in his home country after the third round of the Volvo Scandinavian Masters here yesterday.

Colin Montgomerie, meanwhile, is anxious for his first victory in a year following a series of near misses, while New Zealander Michael Campbell merely wants to break his duck. So, with Parnevik on 203, 13 under, Montgomerie and Campbell both on 206, and Ian Woosnam and Roger Chapman on 208, the tournament, which has attracted mammoth crowds, is building up to a tremendous climax.

Two Swedish players have lost this event in play-offs, Magnus Persson to Gordon Brand junior in 1987 and Anders Forsbrand to Peter Baker two years ago. But if Parnevik keeps his nerve he can give Bernard Gallacher another broad hint that he should be in the Ryder Cup team to meet the United States next month.

Parnevik, having shot a three-under-par 69 yesterday, is not, however, thinking about the Ryder Cup for at least another 24 hours. "I just want to concentrate on this event first," he said. "The pressure is going to be so great with everyone in the crowd wanting me to win and you just don't want to let them down."

For the first time this week the 30-year-old Swede, who finished second at the Open at Turnberry last year, dropped a shot to par with a double- bogey six at the third. He had had two bogey-free rounds, but as he said: "I hit a sloppy shot into a bunker after a perfect drive, came out badly and then three-putted. Michael Campbell had birdied the second and third and when I walked off the third green I was two shots behind."

But then Parnevik played the next 15 holes in five under par while Campbell, who finished joint third at the Open, had four bogeys as well as four birdies over the same spell to finish with a two-under-par 70. Five matches ahead of them Montgomerie was making his challenge. He began the day five shots behind Parnevik and three behind Campbell but, despite missing six putts of less than 10 feet, he romped round in 67.

Campbell, who has come right to the front this year, has been in the top four in European events four times since January. He said: "I have been knocking on the door. Let's hope I knock loudly tomorrow." Woosnam, like Montgomerie, is having putting problems but after a 70 is well in line for a big cheque which would considerably boost his Ryder Cup hopes.