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Olazabal in position to end winless drought

Jose Maria Olazabal
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John Daly signs autographs during a backup of players on the 13th tee during the second round of the Buick Open at Warwick Hills Golf and Country Club in Grand Blanc, Michigan on August 4, 2006.Photo by Michael Cohen/  - 

European Ryder Cup captain Jose Maria Olazabal has a chance on Sunday to pick up his first win in seven years.

After shooting a 1-under 72 on a tough scoring day at Fancourt, the 45-year-old Spaniard trails Branden Grace and Nicolas Colsaerts by two shots going into the final round of the Volvo Golf Champions in South Africa.

“Didn't miss many shots, and whenever I had a birdie opportunity, I converted it,” Olazabal said. “So, obviously very pleased with the scoring. Just trying to get ready for tomorrow.”

The issue Olazabal battles is being both healthy and in form at the same time. This week may be one of those rare instances. A win would be his first since the 2005 Mallorca Classic. He has just one top-10 finish on the European Tour since 2007.

A victory could end that skid but, equally as important, would also help him in scouting for his Medinah-bound team.

“Obviously, you know, it would be nice. But on top of that, that would give me the chance to play sometimes with the boys when they are playing and chat with them,” he said.

The two-time Masters champion, however, will not entertain the idea of being a playing captain.

“I made that point very clear last year in December,” he said. “There is no way. Even if I make the Ryder Cup, I will not play. I've answered that question.”