Mikko Korhonen put himself in pole position to claim his first European Tour title on an entertaining third day of the inaugural Shot Clock Masters in Austria which saw players penalised for time violations for the first time.
This week’s tournament is the first in professional golf to time each shot from every player in the field. They have 50 seconds to take their shot if they are first to play, including tee shots on par threes, or 40 seconds for tee shots on other holes or when second or third to play.
The first two days went by without a single time violation but there were three on Saturday, including Scotland’s Grant Forrest, pictured. Clemens Prader, and Andrea Pavan also went over their time and the trio were handed one-stroke penalties.
Korhonen, meanwhile, will take a commanding five-shot lead into the final round at Diamond Country Club in Atzenbrugg after producing a sparkling 68 to stay bogey-free for the tournament so far.
South African Justin Walters was Korhonen’s nearest challenger on eight under par after carding one birdie and a single bogey on day three.
Scotland’s Connor Syme, Englishman David Horsey and veteran Spaniard Miguel Angel Jimenez were among the large group in a tie for third on seven under. Syme had a round of 69 which included five birdies and two bogeys. He is six off the lead.
Halfway leader Korhonen reached the turn in 33 after following up birdies at the first and third with another from six feet at the ninth. The Finn then made it back-to-back gains with a birdie at the 10th to get to 13 under before safely parring the final eight holes.
“I always love to come here and it seems to be working well this year,” Korhonen said.
“I’m going to stick to the plan and execute it the best I can, so let’s see.”