Goosen Still in Command


PARIS, France -- Retief Goosen carded a 3-under 68 on Saturday to remain in the top spot after three rounds of the Trophe Lancme. Goosen, who is in search of his first win of the season on the European Tour, finished with a 54-hole total of 17-under-par 196.
Paul McGinley shot a 5-under 66 to finish three shots back at 14-under-par 199. Nicolas Colsaerts was one shot further back at 13-under-par 200.
Goosen torched Saint-Nom-La Breteche Golf Club throughout the opening rounds to carry a four-shot advantage into the weekend. On Saturday, the reigning Order of Merit champion picked up where he left off with a pair of birdies over his first three holes.
The South African found trouble with a bogey at the par-4 fourth but recovered well with a birdie at the very next hole. Goosen then birdied the par-3 seventh before stumbling again with a bogey at the eighth.
Again Goosen countered and birdied the ninth to maintain a comfortable edge over his closest competitors.
He tallied a birdie at the par-4 15th to reach 18 under and coasted to a new 54-hole tournament record despite a bogey at the last.
'That wasn't the round I was looking for but hopefully it's my bad one out of the way and I can finish it off on Sunday,' said Goosen. 'I drove the ball pretty poorly and my swing was not feeling up to standard.'
Goosen, an eight-time champion on the European Tour, has not visited the winner's circle since he titled at the Johnnie Walker Classic in 2002.
'It's always tough leading with people chasing but I'm still there and need to get off to a good start on Sunday,' said the 2001 U.S. Open winner. 'A lot can happen over the last few holes, especially when they are playing into the wind and playing long.'
McGinley started the day in fourth place and collected three birdies on the front nine to make the turn at 12 under.
The Irishman bogeyed the 11th but countered with back-to-back birdies starting at the 12th.
McGinley, who hasn't won on tour since the Wales Open two years ago, added a birdie at the 16th to finish three shots behind Goosen.
'He's on fire,' McGinley said of Goosen. 'It's his week and a lot of things are going for him. He's won a lot of big tournaments but we'll see what happens on Sunday.'
Ian Poulter, a two-time winner this season, fired a round of 65 to finish alone at 12-under-par 201. The Englishman was followed by Ireland's Damien McGrane, who was two shots further back at 10-under-opar 203.
Raphael Jacquelin posted a 68 to lead the French contingency at 9-under-par 204. Jacquelin was joined by Sweden's Marten Olander, David Lynn of England and South Africa's Hennie Otto in a tie for sixth.
Eduardo Romero of Argentina and Spain's Carlos Rodiles shared 10th place at 8-under-par 205.
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