Maybin leads going down the stretch in South Africa

 

Golf:Gareth Maybin leads the South African Open by one with nine holes to play after going out in 34 shots at Pearl Valley this morning.

Playing in the final group with overnight leader Lee Westwood, the Ballyclare golfer birdied the par-five third before giving the shot back at the next when he found water.

The 28-year-old bounced back in considerable style with a hat-trick of birdies to move to 15-under, two clear of clubhouse leader Ernie Els.

Maybin did give a shot back on the eight, but was still three clear of Westwood at the turn after the Englishman went out in three-over par.

Rory McIlroy suffered a nightmare start with double-bogeys at the opening two holes. But he would get back on track in spectacular style after a birdie on seven was followed by an eagle two at the ninth where he holed his approach from the right rough.

A birdie on ten would bring him back to level for his round and 11-under for the tournament.

Michael Hoey was a shot further back with two holes to play in his final round, while Damien McGrane was also ten-under playing the 12th.

Els had earlier set the pace with a stunning closing round of eight-under 64 to move to 13-under.