Stephen Dodd
Stephen Dodd Image Credit: Supplied

Stephen Dodd posted an eight-under par round of 62 to tie the lowest round in the history of the Senior Open and head into the final day with a two-stroke lead at Sunningdale Golf Club.

The Welshman leads on 11-under par after a scintillating third round which included nine birdies and just a single dropped shot, with American Jerry Kelly his nearest challenger on nine under par following a two-under par third round of 68 in Berkshire.

Dodd’s history-equalling effort sees him join South African Harold Henning and American Jim Colbert, who both posted 62s at Turnberry in 1990 and 2003, respectively, as holders of the lowest Senior Open rounds. The 55-year-old also tied Sunningdale’s Old Course record which was set by Nick Faldo at the 1986 European Open and tied by Shane Lowry in 2010 Open Qualifying.

There is a star-studded chasing pack at Sunningdale, with 2011 Open Champion Darren Clarke in third place on eight-under, one stroke clear of a trio of past Senior Open winners in defending champion Bernhard Langer, 2016 winner Paul Broadhurst and 2018 champion Miguel Ángel Jiménez, who started his round on Saturday with a slam dunk albatross on the first hole.

South Africa’s Ernie Els sits five shots off the lead in seventh place on six under par and still with a chance of picking up his first Senior Major Championship to add to his two Claret Jugs and two US Open titles.

“I wasn’t really sure what was going to happen today because it was pretty poor yesterday,” said Dodd. “So I got a good night’s sleep, I suppose I got lucky once or twice early on. and I started to hit some good shots in the back nine. The weather is just great. The course is just set so well and so fair. And I think, if you play well, then there’s chances out there. Luckily today for me, I got something in. I’ve played so little competitive golf over the last 18 months, played one event, so I’m not really sure what will happen. With a little luck, you never know.”