European Tour rookie Ross Fisher has to seize the opportunities when they come - and if that means sacrificing a birthday celebration, so be it. Last year he spent his birthday flying to Mexico for a Challenge Tour event. This year he is in China and on the threshold of the best celebration of all - a victory in the US$1.3 million Volvo China Open. The Englishman could barely remember what he did for his 25th birthday on Tuesday - he was still trying to come to terms with leading his first European Tour event. Fisher shot his second consecutive four-under-par 68 to grab a one-shot lead over Chawalit Plaphol of Thailand and Oliver Wilson of England after the third round at Shenzhen Golf Club yesterday. 'It was a shame to be away from my family and friends, but on the other hand it was like, 'wow, I'm going to be in China on my birthday'. I think we went to the market and chilled out,' said Fisher, who has an 11-under-par total of 205. Breathing down his young and inexperienced neck is a host of players, including Chawalit and Wilson, China hero Zhang Lianwei at nine under; and Denmark's Soren Kjeldsen and Englishmen Barry Lane and Miles Tunnicliff at eight under. 'I have won a few tournaments but I don't think anything can compare to this,' said Fisher, who is playing his first full year on the European Tour. 'Last year I played six events and that was a massive help for me - just to be out there with the big boys. 'This is what I have been working for ever since I started playing at the age of three. I've come a long way. It has been hard work but I am playing as well as I ever have and I just have to go out there and try to enjoy it and whatever happens, happens. 'To be honest it really hasn't sunk in yet. I saw my name on the leaderboard yesterday [Friday] after I finished and it was pretty cool. Then it dropped off for a while today and then came back. To see my name at the top is an awesome feeling and I can't wait for tomorrow.' Chawalit, who had a three-shot lead starting the day, headed straight to the range after a frustrating day, which ended with a two-over 74. 'I drove badly,' he said. 'At the practice range I didn't feel good and it carried into the round. It got a bit better on the back nine. I saved par from the trees on the last hole and that has kept me one off the lead. I will give it my best tomorrow and see if I can pull it off.' Wilson missed a number of three-foot putts which would have given him the lead, but was happy to still be in contention and with a chance of victory today. 'I've been struggling on the greens all week. I have to stay patient.'