Hanson leads way on home patch

Rising to the challenge of playing in front of his home fans, Swede Peter Hanson takes a two-stroke lead into the final round of the SAS Masters in Stockholm.

Rising to the challenge of playing in front of his home fans, Swede Peter Hanson takes a two-stroke lead into the final round of the SAS Masters in Stockholm.

But a day that promised so much for English pair Nick Dougherty and Chris Wood did not turn out as well as they hoped.

Ryder Cup hopeful Dougherty shared the halfway pace with Hanson – but a level-par 70 dropped him into a five-way share for second with Scot Gary Orr, Dane Soren Kjeldsen and two more Swedish players in Daniel Chopra and Pelle Edberg.

Wood, making his professional debut four weeks after his fabulous fifth place in The Open at Royal Birkdale, holed his pitch to the first for an eagle two - and when he turned in a five-under 29, he was only one off the lead.

But the back nine brought a double-bogey six on the 12th – and a closing bogey, gave him a 68 and left him joint ninth on five-under, five behind.

“I can’t be disappointed, given how I felt,” said the 20-year-old from Bristol.

“I had some food poisoning yesterday, was sick in the night and didn’t sleep much.

“I feel all right now, but I’ve not eaten anything and didn’t feel comfortable with my swing.”

Hanson, who added a 68 to his two opening 66s, has won only one of 174 European Tour events in his career – but at 24th in the Ryder Cup standings, he cannot quite be ruled out of the equation yet.

“I think I’ve put myself a little bit too far back, but if I win tomorrow I’ll change my mind about taking next week off,” said the 30-year-old, whose only victory was the 2005 Spanish Open.

“I want to give myself every chance.

“Of course you can feel pressure playing at home, but I think it’s more inspirational.”

He bogeyed the third, while Dougherty birdied it – but came back with birdies on the fifth, seventh and 16th.

The last of them was the decisive one of the round, Dougherty missing the green and then failing to sink his three-foot par putt.

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