BMW International Open 2022 R3 { 488 images } Created 22 Jun 2022

Li Haotong will go in search of his first DP World Tour title in more than four years as he takes a three-stroke lead into the final round of the BMW International Open.

The 26-year-old, whose last victory came at the 2018 Dubai Desert Classic, started the day with a one-stroke lead which he quickly extended with his third eagle of the week on the par five sixth hole and three further gains before the turn.

He came home level par after recording three birdies and three bogeys on the back nine to sign for a five under par 67 and a 20 under par total, tightening his grip on the lead he's held after each round at Golfclub München Eichenried.

Li, who equalled the course record of 62 on Thursday, will be joined in the final group by 2016 Ryder Cup player Thomas Pieters, who won his first Rolex Series title at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship in January - his sixth win on the DP World Tour.

Pieters was one under par through ten holes but came home in 31 strokes to sign for a six under 66, moving to within three strokes of Li on 17 under.

One stroke further back is Englishman Jordan Smith, who won his maiden DP World Tour title on German soil at the Porsche European Open in 2017. Sharing fourth place are New Zealander Ryan Fox and Dutchman Darius van Driel on 15 under par.

Player Quotes

Li Haotong: “I was a lot more comfortable than I thought. Quite surprised. Just another great day again. Germany has been treating me very good so far.

"I didn’t expect an eagle on number six, and didn’t expect that birdie on 15 as well. I didn’t expect the driver on the last to hit a tree, but to be fair, I pulled it a little bit. It was just another perfect day for me.

"(On six) We were talking about that with my caddie. I had three eagles in a row, the chip today I thinned a little bit and I thought it was going off the green – somehow it managed to go in. It’s just golf.

Last time when I won in Dubai I was playing with Rory, and I thought I was trying to finish second that week. There’s no expectation. Even today, I played great, still have a three shot lead but tomorrow will be a tough day. I just need to hang on in there, play my game. Expect everything. I just need to get comfortable as much as possible."

Thomas Pieters: "You know people are going to shoot 64, so I was getting a bit frustrated after about six or seven holes because I was only one under and I had to save par a couple of times. It was very nice to shoot 31 on the back.

"(Key moment?) The par save on two, a 60-footer after chunking a five iron on the front edge and I made a 12-14 footer for par, so that was big. If you’re one over early it kind of toughens your day up.

"People have come back from further behind. I just look forward to a lovely day tomorrow and hopefully a lot of birdies."
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