Ogilvy storms into contention at Australian Open

Geoff Ogilvy has stormed into contention at the Australian Open title firing a 8-under-par 64 to be the third round leader at Royal Sydney.

The 2010 Open champion made the turn at 6-under courtesy of birdies at the first and second, before a run of four consecutive birdies starting at the par-3 sixth. Ogilvy closed in style with birdies on the 16th and 18th for a 2-under back nine for a bogey free score card.

“To be honest, I didn’t really see 64 on the first tee, but after going out so well on the front 9 I kind of started seeing a score like that; so it was nice,” said Ogilvy, the 2006 US Open champion.

“So tomorrow I’ll just try to do the same thing. Golf is golf, you’ve just got to go play 18 holes and hit the right shots. If I do, good things will happen; if I don’t, they won’t. So hopefully I hit the good shots.”

Jordan Spieth, Aaron Baddeley and Ryan Fox are two behind Ogilvy at 9-under in a share of second position with Spieth firing a 4-under-par third round.

Geoff Ogilvy Geoff Ogilvy thanks the crowd on day three of the 2016 Australian Open (Credit: Anthony Powter)

“I’m proud with the way I held in there today,” said Spieth who started slowly to be 1-over through five before birdies on the 6th and 7th saw the world number 5 carding a respectable 4-under-par 68.

“I could have easily played myself out of contention there today. I was able to keep control of my game and remain competitive. I’m very pleased with the way I finished playing the back nine at 3-under, so that sets me up nicely for tomorrow.”

Ten players, including second round leader James Nitties, are within four strokes of the Ogilvy. Nitties having a difficult day on the course firing a 2-over-par 74 and unable to repeat yesterday’s 65.

Jake Higginbottom was another to fire carding an early 6-under 66 to have a share of 6th position at 7-under along with Jason Scrivener, Lucas Herbert, Nitties and Adam Scott.

The 23-year-old Higginbottom from Charlestown near Newcastle began his round with a birdie on the first hole, before mixing five birdies and an eagle with two bogeys to sign for a 66.

“It was actually pretty breezy this morning,” said Higginbottom, who won the 2012 New Zealand Open as an amateur.

“I played well. They call it moving day for a reason and it’s always nice being in contention.”

Ogilvy’s last win was at the 2014 Barracuda Championship on the PGA Tour, his eighth PGA Tour title to date. Yet, he would love nothing better that to win at home.

“Obviously, the list of winners on this trophy is about as good as any trophy in the world and the list of multiple winners on this trophy probably is as good as any other trophy in the world – Gary, Jack, Greg. It would be pretty nice.”