Lucas Herbert can come alive on final day at the Hills Club
Confident Aussie growing in stature
Sky Sports Golf, 12pm Sunday
Story so far
Thomas Aiken and Paul Waring – 90-1 and 125-1 respectively ante-post – are co-leaders of the Nordea Masters with 18 holes to play at the Hills Club, Gothenburg.
Aiken, a three-time European Tour champion, birdied the 18th hole for the third consecutive day to reach 12 under par through three rounds, while maiden Waring bogeyed the same hole to join the South African on that score.
Pre-tournament favourite Thorbjorn Olesen, seeking to secure a Ryder Cup debut and an 8-1 chance on Thursday, is tied for third place, three shots behind the pacesetters. Olesen is a general 4-1 to notch a sixth European Tour victory.
-12 Thomas Aiken, Paul Waring
-9 Marc Warren, Thorbjorn Olesen
-8 Max Kieffer
-7 Lucas Herbert, Adam Bland, Lee Slattery
15-8 T Aiken, 12-5 P Waring, 4 T Olesen, 12 M Warren, 28 M Kieffer, 40 L Herbert, 45 L Slattery, 66 A Bland, 80 bar
Some overnight rain should soften the Hills track and perfect weather is forecast for round four – sunny with light breezes – so somebody seems likely to sign off with a super-low round at the Hills Club.
Thomas Aiken, winless on the European Tour for 54 months, and 33-year-old maiden Paul Waring, look like a vulnerable final pairing, and there is definitely scope for players to set a competitive clubhouse target from way off the pace.
The penultimate pairing of Thorbjorn Olesen and Marc Warren could be electric – both men can roll their rock in spectacular fashion when in the groove – but it may be worth chancing an improving player lurking deeper on the board.
Lucas Herbert is one of the most promising youngsters on the circuit, an Australian who impressed in his homeland before making some encouraging forays on to the European Tour. Third place in the Sicilian Open in May, where he was beaten by only a shot, was a sign that he was already a serious title contender, and 18th place in the Fiji International last time out was another solid effort.
Herbert is powerful and explosive, and he is yet to drop a shot this week on the Hills Club back-nine. If he can find some early birdies and keep tabs on the lead, his comfort on the closing stretch – he is eight under par in total for the final four holes – could see conjure a decisive finishing kick.
Olesen, Warren and Herbert can be fancied to make a charge at the leading duo, and the cocksure Aussie may be the one who sneaks over the line in front at a juicy price.
Aiken and Waring are due to tee off in the final twoball at 11.39am UK and Ireland time.
1pt each-way 40-1 Betway
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