Friendly Rivals

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A pair of Ryder Cup teammates turned rivals are set for a Sunday showdown at the Belgacom Open.
 
Padraig Harrington takes a slim one-shot lead over Lee Westwood into the final round at Royal Zoute. But the friendly foes won't be paired together on Sunday. Harrington will play alongside Dane Soren Hansen, who fired a third-round 63 to close to within one of the Irishman.
 
Saturday, Harrington pulled two shots clear of the field with a barrage a birdies beginning at the 15th, but a hooked tee shot at the home hole brought the two-time European Tour winner back to the field.
 
Harrington drove well left at the par-4 18th, and was forced to take an unplayable penalty shot. However, he recovered magnificently to avoid a double bogey or worse. Harrington placed a 9-iron from 150 yards to 30 feet. A two-putt bogey ensued to drop the Irishman to 13-under-par for the tournament.
 
'I could have taken seven, so I'm happy to have made five,' said Harrington. 'I was lucky to be able to drop it and play down a pathway between two trees. It wasn't disappointing at all.'
 
If Westwood can overtake Harrington on Sunday, he will also leapfrog Darren Clarke for the top spot on the 2000 Order of Merit.
 
The Englishman has been near the lead throughout the first three days, but has yet to make his way to the top of the leaderboard.
 
'I played pretty good without being really, really rewarded for it,' said Westwood, who shot a 4-under-par 67 in the third round. 'So perhaps I'll get a little more from the final round.
 
'But it's not just Padraig. There's a log-jam on the leaderboard and I'd be pretty nave and silly to think it's just a two-horse race.'
 
There are ten players within four shots of the lead entering Sunday's play. Among them is second-round leader Tom Gillis.
 
The American overcame a pair of bogeys over his first five holes on Saturday to card a round of even-par 71. At 11-under, Gillis is just two shots back of Harrington.
 
Like Gillis, Hansen is in search of his maiden European victory. But the Copenhagen player also has another goal.
 
'I'm keen to get into the really big money tournament at the end of the season, the Volvo Masters, and a really good finish this week could boost my chances.'