Zhou on course for wire-to-wire win in Beijing

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 12 October, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 12 October, 2008, 12:00am

Zhou Jun could secure a famous wire-to-wire victory after a two-under-par 70 put him two clear of Taiwan's Chan Yih-shin going into the final round of the Omega Championship at the Beijing Longxi Hotspring Golf Club.

Zhou is on five-under, while Chan, who also shot 70, is five strokes clear of the chasing pack.

Zhou will also play for the fourth successive day with Wu Kangchun, his best friend, whose 76 left him two-over and sharing third place with Johnson Xing Xiaoxuan, the second-round co-leader.

Xing, 27, kept up with the pace until the par-three 16th, when a triple-bogey saw him fall off the pace and finish with a 77.

Li Chao ended with a 73 to lie fifth on three-over, meaning he has only a remote chance of the victory required to win his third Omega Order of Merit title in four seasons.

Liao Guiming, the Omega Order of Merit leader, struggled with a stiff neck as an 81 put him joint 20th on nine-over.

Tianjin-based Zhou is in the form of his life after spending July and August in Beijing working with former national coach Song Qingli, which helped produce a fourth-place finish at the Tianjin Championship two weeks ago, his best-ever finish on the tour.

'I'm really surprised to play so well again. I know tomorrow is very important, so I'll try to relax tonight by playing cards with Wu Kangchun as I've been doing all week,' said Zhou.

'I played really well in Tianjin, although I'm starting to get a little bit tired as this is my fifth event in five weeks.

'However, my putting has been good recently, which is the biggest difference to the first half of the year.'