Dazzling Dawson moves to within 5 ahead of final day in Finland 

Robin Dawson (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

Robin Dawson swept into contention on moving day after firing a superb six-under par round of 66 at the Finnish Challenge.

The Tramore professional had only made the cut mark on the number at minus-two but burst through the field with seven birdies and an eagle and finds himself just five shots back at eight-under par heading into the final day.

The 23-year old heads a three strong Irish challenge with Gavin Moynihan and Cormac Sharvin not without hope ahead of Sunday’s last hurrah.

Moynihan’s moving day challenge stuttered with a one-under par round of 71 that sees the Dubliner trailing by six shots at seven-under par.

Meanwhile Sharvin, who’s been the model of consistency this term, returned a rollercoaster round of 71 also to advance to six-under par, a full seven shots back of the lead heading into Sunday.

At the top, Rikard Karlberg will take a one-shot lead into the final round just months after returning to the game following a serious illness.

The Swede, who returned to the European Challenge Tour at the start of this season after a year and a half hiatus from the game due to a serious infection, began the third round with a narrow advantage over a six-strong chasing pack, but remained in control from the start at Vierumäki Resort, recording four birdies and six pars in his opening ten holes.

Despite dropping two shots on the 15th and 16th, the European Tour winner bounced back with birdies at his closing two holes to ensure he will go into the final round with a one-shot lead over South African Bryce Easton.

After five missed cuts in his first six starts following his return, Karlberg showed glimpses of the form that has seen him become a regular competitor on the European Tour over the past decade with a tied for fourth result in the Euram Bank Open in Austria two weeks ago.

‘’The last few tournaments I’ve played on the main tour I started to feel like I had the game to compete again, but the edge was just missing,’’ he said. ‘’After not playing for over a year it’s taken a little while to try and find my game again but the result in Austria proved to me that I could challenge. I feel that I am now in a position where I can go out there and play my best golf.

‘’With the leaderboard so closely packed I’m going to need to go low out there again tomorrow, so I’m just trying to be as relaxed as I was today and see what happens.’’

Easton matched his opening day’s score, a six under par round of 66, to jump back up the leaderboard on moving day and remain in contention for his first Challenge Tour title.

The leading pair are likely to be followed by a considerable contingent of home fans on the final day, with Roope Kakko set to tee off in the final group following a spectacular round of 66 which saw him rise up the leaderboard into a tie for third place, alongside Englishman Mark Young.

Just two shots behind Karlberg, the local hopeful will be looking to emulate the feat of Kim Koivu who became the first Finnish player to capture the title in 2018.

Karlberg will get his final round under way at 9:55am local, alongside Easton and Kakko.

Scores after round 3:

203 R Karlberg (Swe) 66 69 68,
204 B Easton (RSA) 66 72 66,
205 M Young (Eng) 71 65 69, R Kakko (Fin) 71 68 66,
206 J Senior (Eng) 69 68 69, R Santos (Por) 71 67 68, C Hill (Sco) 69 71 66,
207 C Braeunig (Ger) 70 70 67, M Baldwin (Eng) 68 71 68, J Stalter (Fra) 69 67 71,
208 C Berardo (Fra) 67 69 72, R Bland (Eng) 69 70 69, J Lima (Por) 68 70 70, F Maccario (Ita) 69 71 68, R Dawson (Irl) 70 72 66, R Højgaard (Den) 70 70 68,
209 R Sciot-Siegrist (Fra) 68 69 72, J Glennemo (Swe) 71 69 69, O Lindell (Fin) 70 69 70, D Van Driel (Ned) 63 73 73, D Huizing (Ned) 70 69 70, G Moynihan (Irl) 68 70 71, D Foos (Ger) 67 72 70, A Rozner (Fra) 68 71 70,
210 S Matus (Cze) 71 69 70, R De Sousa (Sui) 70 71 69, J Abbott (Eng) 68 70 72, O Lengden (Swe) 68 68 74, M Iten (Sui) 70 69 71, C Sharvin (Nir) 70 69 71, J Lando Casanova (Fra) 69 69 72,
211 P Angles (Esp) 70 71 70, M Schmitt (Ger) 74 66 71, A Hidalgo (Esp) 73 68 70, L Scalise (Ita) 72 69 70, M Jordan (Eng) 70 68 73, C Blomstrand (Swe) 67 72 72,
212 G Porteous (Eng) 70 71 71, J Girrbach (Sui) 68 70 74, M Salminen (Fin) 68 74 70, H Joannes (Bel) 69 71 72, L Jensen (Den) 71 69 72, N Tinning (Den) 68 69 75, S Tiley (Eng) 69 72 71, G Havret (Fra) 70 68 74,
213 M Haastrup (Den) 68 68 77, S Benson (Eng) 73 68 72, R Roussel (Fra) 72 65 76, M Galiano Aguilar (Esp) 70 71 72,
214 E Dubois (Fra) 67 71 76, F Laporta (Ita) 74 68 72, P Maddy (Eng) 70 70 74, B Rusch (Sui) 71 71 72,
215 E Johansen (Nor) 67 74 74, A Garcia-Heredia (Esp) 73 68 74, L Nemecz (Aut) 68 74 73, K Sneck (Fin) 74 68 73,
216 M Simonsen (Den) 69 73 74, A Cockerill (Can) 70 71 75,
217 T Murray (Eng) 73 69 75, E Ferguson (Sco) 71 69 77, N McCarthy (Eng) 70 71 76,
220 J Granberg (Fin) 72 70 78, A Eckhardt (Fin) 74 68 78,



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