All set for another exciting day at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open

Big crowds arriving in Ballyliffen on Day 3

Diarmaid Doherty


Diarmaid Doherty


Day 3 of the golf

A view of the practice area at Ballyliffen on Saturday morning.

It’s Day 3 at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open and once again Ballyliffen is attracting big crowds this morning ahead of what promises to be another exciting day of action.

There’s a three-way tie at the top of the leaderboard. Ryan Fox from New Zealand, Matthieu Pavon from France and South Africa’s Erik Van Rooyen share the lead on 8 under par - Van Rooyen shooting a brilliant 7 under 65 yesterday to move among the leaders

Those three players won’t begin their third rounds until shortly after 1 o’clock today

The players are  going out in two balls in their third rounds - and the first of those who just about made the cut were out from immediately at 7am this morning.

Unfortunately, from an Irish perspective, those early starters didn’t include a couple of Irishmen who finished their second rounds in hugely disappointing fashion

Padraig Harrington and Ruairi McGee both recorded double bogeys on their final holes to miss the cut.

There remains plenty of Irish interest today with Shane Lowry and Simon Thornton leading the Irish challenge on 2 under.

Lowry will partner Sweden’s Alexander Bjork, and they’ll tee off at 11.35am. Just before that, Thornton and his playing partner Richard Sterne from South Africa are out at 10.53.

And a big crowd is expected to follow Rory McIlroy who will be out on the course at 10.44am. He begins at one under and will play along with American Julian Suri.