Fichardt leads Saint-Omer Open
South Africa's Darren Fichardt stormed into a five-shot lead at the Saint Omer Open Saturday while overnight leader Kim Sihwan crashed to a third round 81 to be 11 shots off the pace.
Fichardt, chasing a third European Tour title, carded a two under par 69 in the third round, five shots ahead of England's Simon Wakefield.
The South African thrived in the strong winds at Saint Omer Golf Club, hitting five consecutive birdies on the front nine.
But South Korean Kim dropped six shots in his opening seven holes and ultimately signing for an 81 and four over for the tournament.
"I knew it would be a hectic day when we started," said 37-year-old Fichardt, whose round could have been even more impressive had he not bogeyed the 12th, 13th and 17th holes.
"But it turned out to be absolutely brutal. The string of birdies on the front nine helped separate me from the rest of the field and it was just a question of hanging on on the back nine."
Fichardt has two European Tour titles to his name – the 2001 Sao Paulo Brazil Open and the 2003 Qatar Masters.
He believes his experience could be helpful in Sunday's final round.
"It has been quite a few years since I won on The European Tour, but I've won a couple of titles in South Africa in the last couple of seasons. I know what it takes to get the job done and it's all good experience," he said.