Darren Clarke, failed to take advantage of a first cut made in 18 months after limping to a third round 79 at the Maybank Championship in Malaysia.
Clarke had birdied his final hole on Friday to end a miserable run of 17 missed cuts in style and started today like a man determined to build on the removal of such an unwanted hoodoo.
He opened with a birdie four on the 1st before dropped shots on 2 and 4 set the tone for a rollercoaster round of golf. Back-to-back birdies on 5 and 6 had the Northern Irishman exchanging blows with the golf course like a heavyweight boxer but a double bogey six on 8 proved a telling blow.
Punch drunk, Clarke hit the canvass with a disastrous treble bogey on 10 but to his credit, he got back up for more. Four pars followed before a bogey on 15 was immediately cancelled out by a birdie at 16, the clubhouse in his sights, bruised but not battered.
However, with two holes to play he failed to avoid a haymaker in waiting on 17, another not so magnificent seven on the card, with Clarke’s back-nine totalling an oversized 42 strokes. At +3 for the tournament, the Ryder Cup hero now finds himself propping up the field in 81st place.
At the other end of the spectrum, Jorge Campillo and Dylan Frittelli will share the lead heading into the final round after another enthralling day at Saujana Golf & Country Club.
It has been a tight affair in Kuala Lumpur all week and Saturday proved no different, with 13 different players holding a share of the lead at some point during round three.
While those around them jostled for position, playing partners Campillo and Frittelli kept their cool, recording a pair of bogey-free rounds of 66 to get to 15 under.
American Berry Henson and Indian Khalin H Joshi were then at 14 under, a shot clear of Nino Bertasio, Phachara Khongwatmai, Hideto Tanihara, Marc Warren, Prayad Marksaeng and Ryo Ishikawa.