Ogilvy pushes lead to five over Jones after 54 holes at Australian Open

geoff ogilvy
Getty Images
A third-round 67 boosted 2006 U.S. Open champion Geoff Ogilvy to a 54-hole total of 16-under 200.
By
Associated Press

Series:

Published: Saturday, December 04, 2010 | 1:37 a.m.

Geoff Ogilvy increased his one-shot overnight lead to five strokes after three rounds at the Australian Open, shooting a 5-under-par 67 Saturday at The Lakes to leave most of the field out of contention for his country's national championship.

Ogilvy, the 2006 U.S. Open champion, had a 54-hole total of 16-under 200. Australian Matt Jones, who trailed Ogilvy by a stroke going into the third round, fell off the pace with a 71, one shot better than Australians Greg Chalmers (66) and Alistair Presnell (67), who are tied for third, six back of Ogilvy.

2010 AUSTRALIAN OPEN

The Australian Open is the second of three big events being played Down Under this month.

John Senden, who won the Australian Open in 2006, was in fifth place after a 70, level with fellow Australian Matthew Griffin, who shot 72, each seven strokes back.

Ogilvy, who has won three World Golf Championship titles as well as his 2006 major, has never won the Australian Open. His only pro win Down Under came at the Australian PGA Championship in 2008.

He bogeyed the final hole Saturday, a tough par 3.

"I played so well the past few days, so I guess I can't complian about that," he said of the 4 on No. 18. "I've given myself a little bit of room from the field, which is good."

Greg Norman, who shot 70 Saturday and is 13 shots off the lead, said he was no fan of the new, slow undulating greens at The Lakes.

"They're too slow for me," Norman said. "I'm a fast-green putter and I can't get the right line or the speed with them, so you're always fighting and you've got to hit the ball too hard to really get comfortable.

"They've got so much undulation, they can't get them too much quicker,” he added. “If you got them any quicker, balls would be rolling into the water and balls rolling off the greens.”

The 55-year-old Norman said the greens were basically not fit for an Australian Open.

"It's a problem if you're going to have a golf championship here," Norman said. "For the members, it's not. For the members, you're going to have to keep them pretty slow for them or they'd never get around here.

"But obviously someone's feeling good with it. They're shooting 13 under, but they're just not my cup of tea."

Norman's fellow Presidents Cup captain Fred Couples and American John Daly both missed the 36-hole cut by a stroke.