Dunne shines with 69 as Rahm tees up shot at history in Spain

Ronan MacNamara

Paul Dunne during the acciona Open de Espana (Photo by Jose Manuel Alvarez/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

Jon Rahm is eighteen holes away from equalling the great Seve Ballesteros’s record of three acciona Open de Espana titles after he roared to the summit in Madrid.

The Spaniard leads Australian Min Woo Lee by one shot on sixteen-under and Sunday promises to be a thrilling encounter.

Paul Dunne put on a stirring finish with two closing birdies for a 69 and a four-under total and the Greystones man is in a share of 47th after he arrested a run of eleven pars with a bogey on 12 and three birdies in seven holes.

There was disappointment for Niall Kearney and his DP World Tour card hopes as he fell to a two-over 73 to slip to two-under for the tournament while Jonathan Caldwell is one-over after a 74.

Rahm shot a six-under 65 to leapfrog the field while Lee, who is no stranger to the big occasion with a Scottish Open on his CV, was one less as he moved to -15.

After two birdies in an otherwise uneventful front nine, Rahm turned the screw and cruised home in just 31 strokes with birdies on 11, 12, 14 and 18 in a superb finish.

“I’m feeling good. I’d say I wish most of my rounds could be as organised as this one right now,” said the Spaniard.

“I don’t feel like I did anything special, maybe the up-and-down on 17, but I just played consistent golf, put the ball in play, and the few times I missed the tee shot I was never really out of it.

“I had a shot to the green and I was able to pull it off every time, so only one stressful part on 17 and besides that, there were a lot of good birdie looks and par putts in that. Like I said, hopefully I can play another round like that tomorrow because I felt like I kept going shot by shot and I was six under.

“It’s been great, we have played really good golf both of us. He (Min Woo Lee) had that bad start on the front nine on Thursday and has played amazing since then, I had the bad start on my front nine on Friday, and everything else has been great golf. It is easy to feed off each other right, you know every time one of us is in the fairway we are going to have a birdie look, so you know birdies are coming. We have both been getting up-and-down from a lot of spots, he has had two hole outs, I’ve had one, and some really good shots besides those that we holed out.

“Well hopefully my best round can be tomorrow. Let’s hope for that and have an enjoyable walk down 18. That would be a perfect day.”

Eddie Pepperell continued his recent resurgence with a 67 to share third on thirteen under in a six-way tie that includes overnight leader Stephen Gallacher who stayed in the hunt with a 70.

Paul Waring saw his hopes dashed with a 74 and he’s back in the pack on nine-under.

Scoring HERE

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