|Welsh star Becky Brewerton|
(Evian-les-Bains, France – Saturday 25th July 2009) – Becky Brewerton shared the Evian Masters lead for a third day after a round of three-under 69 at Evian Masters Golf Club in France on Saturday.
The Welshwoman finished at 12-under-par alongside Swede Sophie Gustafson, who shot 67, and South Korean In-Kyung Kim, who fired 68.
Brewerton only qualified for the tournament by winning her second Ladies European Tour title in Spain on Sunday.
She recorded a wire to wire victory over four days at Panoramica Golf Club in the Open de Espana Femenino and has now either led or co-led for seven straight tournament rounds.
“I’m getting used to it a little bit now. I think this week is a little bit different pressures. So I’m thoroughly enjoying it still,” said Brewerton, who carded four birdies and one bogey on Saturday.
“It was definitely a bit more of a struggle today. I wasn’t quite flowing with my game as I had been over the previous two days.”
After a bogey at the third, followed by three birdies in the next four holes, the 26-year-old was tied at the top of the leader board on 11-under with Gustafson and South Korean Na Yeon Choi after nine holes.
She sank a 15 foot birdie putt at the 388-year par-four 10th to establish the outright lead but was caught by Gustafson, Kim and Ai Miyazato from Japan, who then dropped a shot at the last hole.
Brewerton is gunning for the joint highest first prize in women’s golf, US$487,500, plus the prestige of winning one of the world’s premier golf tournaments. She admitted that Sunday would bring the most important round of her life.
“I was trying to lie there last night and sort of imagine what it was going to be like and what it might be like tomorrow. And although I’m enjoying it, it’s a good kind of nerves. You just have to stay in control and not get too excited,” she said.
The 26-year-old Solheim Cup player has gained enormous self belief since joining up with coach Stewart Craig and sports psychologist Brian Hemmings in recent months. She also enjoys the company of her caddie Craig Barber-Ball, who helps her to take her mind off the golf in between shots.
Fellow former Solheim Cup player Gustafson fired three birdies and an eagle in a flawless 67, moving into contention for her 23rd worldwide tournament victory. She recorded her last win at the 2007 De Vere Ladies Scottish Open and said: “It’s always nice to be in contention. I had a couple good par saves, but playing a bogey-free round here, I’m very pleased with.”
Kim, a two-time winner on the LPGA Tour, started with a bogey at the second but reeled off five birdies over her closing 11 holes.
“I’ve been enjoying playing in the last group, because you really have you know, when you have pressure, that means you have a chance to win the tournament, so I’m very excited,” she admitted.
American Cristie Kerr (67) and Miyazato (70) were a stroke behind the leaders with the 2006 champion Australian Karrie Webb a shot further back on 10-under-par.
Swede Helen Alfredsson, a three-time winner of the event, kept her chances of a successful title defence alive with a 68 to finish just three shots off the pace in a share of seventh.
She finished at nine-under alongside the 2005 event champion Paula Creamer from the United States and the halfway co-leader South Korean Na Yeon Choi.