Sam Horsfield on the verge of eclipsing mentor Ian Poulter as the 23-year-old Englishman closes-in on Hero Open victory on home-turf
- Ian Poulter has won tournaments on five continents but never in England
- Sam Horsfield, who was mentored by Poulter, is closing in on the achievement
- The 23-year-old is in reach of taking his first European Tour success on Sunday
Sam Horsfield will achieve something that has always eluded his mentor Ian Poulter if he can complete a maiden European Tour success in the Hero Open at Forest of Arden on Sunday.
Poulter has won tournaments on no fewer than five continents during his illustrious career, but he’s never managed to win in his native England.
That prize now lies within the grasp of 23-year-old Horsfield, although he will be kicking himself for turning today into an almighty bun fight rather than a glorious coronation.
Sam Horsfield is within touching distance of getting one over his mentor Ian Poulter on Sunday
Poulter has won plenty of tournaments but a win in his native England has eluded him so far
Horsfield looked unbeatable when he established a six-shot lead halfway through his third round after reaching the turn in a wonderful 31 shots.
But it all started to go wrong after he missed a tiddler at the 10th. A lost ball, a visit to the water, a three-putt from nowhere — it all added up to a miserable 40 strokes coming home to give hope to so many.
‘I lost my timing and a couple of the swings were horrendous, but it’s important to remember I’m still in a very good position,’ Horsfield pointed out. ‘If someone had said to me last Thursday that I’d have a one-shot lead going into the final round on Sunday, I’d have taken that.’
Horsfield has made his own task difficult but he is in pole position to take victory this weekend
Alongside Horsfield on Sunday will be the brilliant Danish teenager, Rasmus Hojgaard, in a final round pairing offering a glimpse into the tour’s future.
With 13 players within three shots of the lead, a compelling last day is in prospect with any number of fairytales waiting to be written.
How about Welshman Oliver Farr, just a shot behind and attempting to give his father Graham a retirement present he will never forget?
The young English star handed hope to his competitors with his struggles on Saturday
Graham, who played a few times on tour himself, retired on Friday from his club pro job just a 30-minute drive from today’s venue.
‘I used to come and watch this event growing up, so it’s a thrill simply to be here,’ said Oliver, 32.
Three behind is Englishman Richard Bland, attempting to win for the first time on tour at the age of 47 in his 447th event.