Paul Peterson of the United States posted a bogey-free three-under-par 69 to hold a narrow one-shot lead over countryman John Catlin in the third round of the Sarawak Championship on Friday.
Peterson, who won his first Asian Tour title in January, fired three birdies on his homeward nine to hold on to his lead for the third straight day on 17-under-par 199 at the Damai Golf and Country Club.
Catlin kept up his chase for a second Asian Tour title following a 68 while Thailand’s Danthai Boonma (68), who will play in The Open in a fortnight, and Spaniard Javi Colomo (68) are a further shot back in third place.
India’s Gaganjeet Bhullar also charged into contention with a sparkling 66 to share fifth place with Thailand’s Peradol Panyathanasedh (67) on a 202 total at the US$300,000 Asian Tour event.
Southpaw player Peterson started with nine straight pars before birdies on holes 10, 13 and 16 earned him a slight edge heading into the final 18 holes. The American continued his fine form after dropping only one shot in 54 holes.
The 27-year-old Catlin has unfinished business this week after finishing second on this course on the Asian Development Tour (ADT) last year. The American sank a clutch birdie putt from 18 feet on the 17th hole to stay within striking distance.
Thailand’s Boonma birdied the last two holes to put himself in prime position to end a three-year title drought on the Asian Tour. This will be his final event before he heads to Carnoustie for his Major debut at The Open.