Padraig Harrington soars to share of lead at Czech Masters

Padraig Harrington soars to share of lead at Czech Masters

Padraig Harrington rolled back the years with a bogey-free 65 to take a share of the lead into the final round of the D+D Real Czech Masters in Prague.

The 46-year-old Irishman will act as a vice captain at the Ryder Cup next month but he showed the sort of form that earned him six playing appearances at the biennial spectacular to sit alongside Italy's Andrea Pavan at 17 under.

Pavan also carded a bogey-free 65 and the leading pair will enter Sunday with a three-shot lead over Malaysian Gavin Green and four ahead of Scotland's Scott Jamieson.

England's Eddie Pepperell could move into an automatic qualifying place for the Ryder Cup with a win, while Belgian Thomas Pieters is looking to impress European captain Thomas Bjorn and earn a wild card, but they will both head into round four six shots off the lead.

Harrington got up and down to birdie the par five first and then some dialled-in iron play brought further gains on the sixth and seventh.

The par-five ninth, 10th and 12th saw the three-time major winner pick up three more shots to share the lead with Pavan and when he made an eight-foot putt on the 14th, he led on his own.

Pavan then holed a brilliant double-breaker down the slope on the 15th to make it a tie at the top once more.

"I feel like it was a day too early," said Harrington. "It took a lot out of me, a lot of focus and I holed the putts that you'd like to be holing on a Sunday.

"I'm hoping there's still another round in it but it was certainly one of those days that you'd like to get on a Sunday afternoon rather than a Saturday afternoon.

"I'm not in the running for Ryder Cup at all. I don't deserve to be there and I'm leaving it to the young guys."

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