Loubser closes in at Italian Champs

South Africa’s Herman Loubser fired a four-under-par 69 to close the gap on Italian Leo Riccardo, who leads the third round of the Reply Italian International Under-16 Championship in Biella at six-under-par 213.

The reigning Nomads SA Boys U-17 champion dropped a shot at the fifth after a pair of birdies, and reeled in gains at seven and eight to turn three under.

Loubser birdied 11, but bogeyed at 12 and managed to knock home another birdie putt at 14 before closing with four straight pars.

The 16-year-old Boland junior is five strokes off the pace of the local favourite and one behind Alex Fitzpatrick from England. The Italian and the Englishman both registered rounds of 72.

Luke Mayo from KwaZulu-Natal carded a 75 and will start the final round in a tie for fourth at two over, while compatriot Luca Filippi a further stroke adrift in joint ninth after a 74.

Mayo was three over at the turn after a bogey at five and double bogey at six.

The Mount Edgecombe junior birdied 10 and 11, wiped out a bogey at 12 with a birdie at 13, but dropped another shot at 17 before closing with a par.

Filippi from Western Province negated bogeys at 10 and 13 with birdies at 15 and 16 and completed his back nine in one over after a lone bogey at the second.

“All three boys are excited to get going in the final round,” said South African Golf Association Golf Integration Manager Eden Thompson.

“Wilco (Nienaber) was asked to serve as a marker today, but this morning we discovered that the player he was due to mark for, withdrew due to back injury. Wilco was disappointed not to have another go at the course, but he is doing an outstanding job splitting his time to support his team mates out there in the heat.”

To view live scoring from the final round, click HERE

Written and released by Lali Stander on behalf of the South African Golf Association.

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