Poulter belies brutal conditions, shares Scottish Open lead

Ian Poulter was pleased with his third round in tough conditions at the Scottish Open

Ian Poulter was pleased with his third round in tough conditions at the Scottish Open

Fox's two-under round of 70 included a remarkable par on the par-three sixth when he holed his provisional after losing his ball off the tee. He was unable to get up-and-down and the resulting bogey saw him finish 72 holes tied with Cabrera-Bello.

Spain's Rafa Cabrera-Bello had finished his tournament earlier in the day, having carded a course record 64 to set a clubhouse target of 13-under-par.

Britain's Ian Poulter, who shared the overnight lead with Dodt and Shinkwin on nine under, fell away after a 74 left him on seven under alongside American Rickie Fowler, the 2015 victor, and four others.

The Spaniard clinched his third European Tour victory with a two-putt birdie at the first extra hole at Dundonald Links after hitting a superb approach shot into the par-five 18th from 275 yards.

"It's been a very good week", he said. "Obviously a few months back, things were pretty hard but obviously life's a little bit easier right now and I'm enjoying my golf".

"It was pretty cool to be able to do that today", he said.

Six successive pars had kept Shinkwin in touch, but he came to life at the seventh with a birdie and followed that up with two more at the eighth and ninth, all with relatively short putts after some excellent iron play.

The field for the Open at Royal Birkdale was completed with three spaces for the top finishers at the Dundonald Links who were not previously in the draw.

"I have been fighting for this win for many years", the 33-year-old said. I had no shot, really.

"When we got to the 10th, probably through the 14th, 15th, it started raining and it just got so hard".

"I have been really working hard to get the third win to get under my belt".

A runner-up finish means he has secured place in the Open and also his European Tour playing rights for next season - not bad for a player who had missed nine cuts in a row from January to June.

"I'm not in The Open yet".

"Of course I was nervous but to be fair it was nothing like what everyone probably thinks".

"I feel that I played some of the best golf of my life today".

Poulter was seeking a 14th worldwide win - and first since November 2012 - but was always playing catch-up after three-putting Nos.

Fox is on the crest of a wave at present with a 6th place finish in France and a 4th place finish in Northern Ireland last week which earned him an Open Championship start.

The Scottish Open is the European Tour's final tuneup for The Open Championship.

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