Twin Creeks bares its teeth

Lucas Herbert
Lucas Herbert plays from the sand on the 3rd hole at Twin Creeks Golf and Country Club

The Kel Nagle Cup might be a good remedy for Bendigo professional Lucas Herbert who has stormed to the outright lead midway through the third round of the NSW Open today.

It was only last month that the tyalented 21 year-old missed out on qualifying for final stage of the web.com tour school.

Herbert started his round in the penultimate group, one shot back from the leaders Kramer Hickok, Ben Eccles, Jarryd Felton and Daniel Nisbet, but has taken the outright lead through the first nine at -16.

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Daniel Nisbet
Daniel Nisbet waits for the result of a chip shot during round 3 of the NSW Open at Twin Creeks.

Like Hickok, who started with a double-bogey six on the first (bunker-bunker-bunker), Herbert also struggled with a bogey but blasted his way into the lead with six straight birdies.

Conversely Hickok, who had played the first 36 holes with just the one bogey, struggled through the front nine as the wind picked up and the course quickened.

The talented Texan also bogeyed the difficult par 3 sixth, playing into a strong crosswind.

He said earlier in the week that liked where his game was at “but I haven’t played in the wind yet”. The stronger than predicted north-easterly played havoc with the field on the front nine, with a few exceptions like New South Welshman Rhein Gibson who is -4 for the round with five holes left to play.

Kramer Hickok
Kramer Hickok gets airborne to see the result of his approach to the 4th hole

The back nine is likely to be more challenging today with the downwind holes from 14 through to 16 tripping up the field yesterday.

The day’s biggest galleries are following the lead group of Nesbit, Felton and Hickok, as well as the exciting youngsters of Min Woo Lee (Am), Harrison Endycott and Japanese amateur Takumi Kayana.

Lee’s game plan of playing low into the wind is working again today, with a bogey on six sandwiched by birdies on five and seven. Kayana has fallen out of the top 10 and was +3 for the day with just a lone birdie on the par-five fifth.

Rhein Gibson
Rhein Gibson tees off on the first hole during the 3rd round of the NSW OPen at Twin Creeks

Other notable rounds this morning include that of local amateur Joshua Gadd (-10) who has had five birdies and two bogeys nearing the end of his third round and is sitting at 7th on the leaderboard.

The round of the day belongs to Queensland professional Blake Proverbs who followed up his second-round 73 with a seven-under 65 which included six straight birdies on the back nine, to be in a tie for 7th and within striking distance tomorrow.

New Zealander Brad Shilton and Jake Higginbottom from Newcastle both 67 to climb into a share of 24th.

Don't forget to catch all the action LIVE from 12pm to 5pm Saturday and Sunday on Epicentre.TV, foxtel Digital or PGA TV as many of Australia's best golfers battle it out for the Kel Nagle Cup.