Donald and McIlroy tied for Dubai lead

Published Saturday, 24 November 2012
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Rory McIlroy is in a tie for the lead on 17 under with Luke Donald as the third round of the World Tour Championship in Dubai has come to a close.

Donald and McIlroy tied for Dubai lead
Rory McIlroy and caddie JP Fitzgerald during the third round in Dubai. (© Getty)

They are both 17 under par after third round 66s at the DP World Tour Championship and Donald has yet to drop a shot in the tournament. Jesper Parnevik in 1995 was the last to do that in winning an event on the circuit.

Donald and McIlroy are three clear of South Africans Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel and five in front of their compatriot Branden Grace and Dutchman Joost Luiten.

Everybody else looks too far back given the pedigree of the leaders.

Donald has now played 100 holes in the event without a bogey.

"I'm not sure I can believe that," he said on being told of the fact.

"That's pretty good. I guess that's my style - I don't make too many mistakes.

"It's going to be fun - great for the crowd and everyone watching around the world.

"Hopefully we can make some birdies."

Donald played the front nine much the better, a four-birdie 32 compared to McIlroy's 35 which contained an opening bogey after he drove into a bunker, but then birdies at the third and sixth.

It was on the inward half that the 23-year-old has really prospered all week, though, and after picking up more shots on the 11th and 12th he found the green in two at the long 14th and holed an eagle putt of around 30 feet.

Donald had needed to sink a 10-footer just for birdie there after twice finding the left-hand rough and he added another at the par five last after pitching to six feet before McIlroy, in rough off the tee, matched it with a putt of similar distance.

The Holywood man has been feeling the effects of what he thinks has been a touch of sunstroke.

This time last year it was suspected Dengue fever he was suffering from, but the 23-year-old said: "It's nothing to with Dubai.

"It's something about this time of year; it's all the travel we do," he said.

"All that time on planes is not great for you."

Scot Marc Warren, joint halfway leader with Donald and McIlroy, managed only a 72 to remain 11 under, his troubles starting when he pulled his drive down the long second into bushes, took a penalty drop and ran up a bogey six.

© UTV News
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