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Published: Sunday January 13, 2013 MYT 9:50:00 PM

Jamieson poised for Durban double

DURBAN, South Africa: Scott Jamieson is poised to win two European Tour events in this Indian Ocean city within two months after taking a five-shot lead Saturday three rounds into the Volvo Golf Champions.

Jamieson fired a four-under-par 68 for a total of 201 at Durban Country Club to move clear of Thai Thongchai Jaidee, Julien Quesne of France and South African Louis Oosthuizen.

The Scot won the first event of the 2013 European Tour - the inaugural Nelson Mandela Championship - last month at another Durban course after the tournament was cut to two rounds by torrential rain.

Glasgow-born Jamieson singled out the eighth and 11th as crucial holes during his round in the two-million-euro opening tournament this year on the European circuit.

"It was a bit of a slow start for me, so it was great to hit a three iron to five feet on eight and sink the eagle putt. That really set up my round," he told reporters.

"At 11 I was staring at a bogey five and was able to chip in for a birdie that was perhaps a bit of a steal. When things have not been going quite my way, I have been able to hit a good chip or hole a putt."

He is alone among the 33 competitors in having shot three sub-70 rounds over the 6,111-metre course, opening with a 69 and shooting a second-round 64 to be one stroke behind Oosthuizen at the halfway stage.

Jamieson began the third round erratically with a birdie and two bogeys within four holes before an eagle three at eight enabled him to turn for home one under par.

The 29-year-old made a much better start to the inward half with three birdies on the trot from 11 only to bogey 17 before closing with another birdie.

Oosthuizen flopped amid much South African anticipation that he would stretch his lead in the penultimate round, and most of the damage was inflicted on the first nine where he bogeyed four holes.

Former paratrooper Thongchai, who set the pace Thursday with an opening 65, continued his slide with a one-over 73 despite making a good start by birdieing two of the first three holes.

But he dropped shots at eight, 16 and 18 and parred the rest to leave him needing a low final round and several slips by Jamieson to have any chance of claiming his sixth European Tour victory.

Quesne had only six pars in a five-under 67 highlighted by an eagle three at the third and which also included seven birdies and four bogeys. It was his second consecutive 67 after a 72 in a first round hampered by wind and rain.

Defending champion Branden Grace of South Africa, winner of five European Tour titles last season, trails Jamieson by 10 strokes after a 69, with the low point a double-bogey five at the second.

The Volvo Golf Champions is restricted to 2012 European Tour winners and those with more than 10 career titles on the circuit, and there was no halfway cut because of the small field. -AFP

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