Haotong Li leads at Turkish Airlines Open, Rose still eyes No. 1

Haotong fired a superb 63 to vault to the top on 17 under

Haotong fired a superb 63 to vault to the top on 17 under

The 38-year-old is now a combined 55 under par for his 12 rounds in the £5.4million event after finishing third on his debut in 2013, while he also won its precursor - an eight-man matchplay competition - in Antalya in 2012.

Rose had begun his final round three shots behind Li, but by the 15th tee the Englishman led by two with four to play.

'Maybe I haven't won enough tournaments to give myself enough opportunities to defend, but to do it back-to-back is very special.

"(Last time) I lost in the playoff to Keegan Bradley at (BMW Championship) and I was pretty aware my playoff record wasn't great.

"I definitely got a lot of confidence from Dubai and since then I've been playing a lot of big events which has built my confidence, also". "But this time I've got the double kind of winning feeling, so it might be a bit more fun to celebrate it at this time".

Thomas Detry reeled off five consecutive birdies on the back nine as he earned a share of third with Adrian Otaegui, with both shooting 65, while Kaymer's 66 earned the former world No 1 only his third top-10 finish of the year, and his first since June.

Li then bogeyed the 11th after missing the green with his approach and although he finally picked up his first birdie of the day on the par-five 12th, Rose did likewise to remain one ahead.

Overnight leader Rose, who would go back to the top of the world rankings with a victory on Sunday, turned in 31 but struggled to carry the momentum on the back nine.

He failed to take advantage of a three-putt bogey by Li at the 18th, however, bunkering his approach before lipping out from six feet for victory to card a 68 to Li's 71 and leave them tied on 17-under par.

But Haotong responded with the shot of the day, a remarkable long-iron over the water hazard which pitched safely on the 15th green and rolled to within two feet of the pin to set up a tap-in for eagle, and he soon found himself back in a share of the lead when Rose raced his long eagle putt seven feet past the cup and missed the return.

The Chinese player eagled the par-4 10th and had six birdies - all on the first 12 holes.

'There were moments out there where it looked like both of us weren't holding our nerve very well, ' Rose admitted.

"Now I'll have an objective and I can't change today obviously, so the position I'm in is the position I'm in", he said. "That was a tough way to finish".

Li is looking for his second win of the year following the Omega Dubai Desert Classic.

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