Richie Ramsay jumps 30 spots after bogey-free 67 in Dubai

Richie Ramsay jumped 30 spots on the back of a bogey-free 67 in the third round of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic - and is now praying for another demanding last-day test on the Majlis Course at Emirates Golf Club.

Richie Ramsay signed for a five-under-par 67 in the third round of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic to move into the top 30. Picture: Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images
Richie Ramsay signed for a five-under-par 67 in the third round of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic to move into the top 30. Picture: Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images

The 35-year-old’s five-under-par effort, which was bettered only by Andrew ‘Beef’ Johnston’s 65 - catapulted him into joint-26th after he’d made the halfway cut with nothing to spare.

Ramsay closed with scores of 69 and 64 to tie for sixth in this event 12 months ago and was delighted with his latest leap up the leaderboard, which is topped by American Bryson DeChambeau.

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“A move in the right direction,” said the Aberdonian after moving to eight-under through birdies at the first, second, sixth, 13th and 16th. “I flat out played really good. I had two missed greens - at eight and nine - and got up and down both times.

“That was the difference as it kept the momentum going. From there, I had chances on 10 and 11 before making a nice 12-footer on 13. I missed a really good chance on 14 from six feet but holed a nice one from about 12 feet at 16.

“If I hadn’t made those up and downs, it would have killed my momentum and fed into the rest of my round.

“I played really well today. My irons and driving was great, but the biggest thing was those two up and downs as those are the things I’ve been working on.”

Ramsay left it until the last regular event of the season last year before retaining his European Tour card and another big finish here would be a positive step towards getting that job done a lot quicker this time around.

“If you are selling five under, I will buy it off you then have a day off on Monday beffore turning my attention to the Saudi International,” he added.

“This course definitely suits me due to it being tight from the tee. For the first few days the course was relatively soft. But I think the course set up today is about as perfect as you are going to find.

“There’s an element of rough and, if you miss the fairway, because the greens are a lot firmer it’s harder to control the short into greens. The advantage of being on the fairway is significant and around here you have fast greens. It plays into my hands when the course is firm like that.”

Ramsay had steam coming out of his ears after finishing bogey-bogey in his second round, but he now has a spring back in his step.

“I had a little lesson with (putting guru) Phil Kenyon after my round yesterday with regards to my eyes when I’m putting. I use a laser that gives you an idea where you are aiming,” he said.

“What I was doing was my eyes were going to the wrong point. I was always missing high so I needed to put my eyes to the entry point.

“That allows me to feel a little bit more comfortable over the ball and the snowball effect from there is that it means I take the putter back a bit freer and swing a bit freer. The pace was a little bit better today.

“I always take a laser with me as it gives you an exact idea of where you are aiming. You are always aiming to get the correct feedback and that’s the best way to do it. Anything to save a shot here or there.”

The three-time European Tour winner has had his left wrist taped up in every round so far this week. “Everyhting was fine with it today until I made a practice swing at 17 and it felt a bit niggly,” he said. “I iced it last night . I’ll not hit any shots. I’ll just hit a few putts then ice it again.

“I did it hitting off mats. I got new clubs and I couldn’t help myself. I was like a kid with new toys so I went to the range. I then did some driver testing with the wee man (Ian Rae) thenext day, which I think exaggerated it. I just need to be careful, especially when the turf is getting a bit firmer.”

Two-time winner Stephen Gallacher had two double-bogeys in a 76 - his worst score on this course since signing for the same score in the final round in 2010.

That dropped him into a share of 69th on level-par, a shot ahead of Marc Warren, who never really recovered from letting three shots spill in two holes early on. Having also had to settle for a 76, Warren is one of only three players over par.