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Hoey's poor round leaves him in battle to keep Tour card

By Chris Smart

Galgorm Castle star Michael Hoey's hopes of earning a European Tour card are hanging in the balance after a disappointing third round at the final stage of qualifying at PGA Catalunya in Spain.

Hoey remains the best-placed Irishman in terms of claiming a Tour card, but his chances are slim as he carded a six over par 76 on the Tour Course, his worst score so far.

Starting on the 10th, he began with two bogeys and two birdies on his front nine before hitting trouble on his back nine with four bogeys and a triple bogey.

The 37-year-old Belfast player's previous scores of 70 and 67 in round one and two leave him tied for 75th on 213, one over par.

The roster will be cut at 70 and ties after today's fourth round with the top 25 and ties earning a Tour card after the sixth and final round on Thursday.

Derry-born Ruaidhri McGee boosted his chances of making the cut with a one under par third round, which included three birdies. He is in a tie for 88th and a good round today could see him advance to the final 36 holes.

Gary Hurley and Kevin Phelan are all but out of contention to make the cut. Hurley is tied for 107th on 219 after a 76 while Phelan's six over par third round has him tied for 124th.

Meanwhile, Andy Sullivan and Chris Wood will represent England at the World Cup of Golf this month.

The pair will play after Danny Willett's withdrawal with a back injury last week and Justin Rose's decision not to feature as he is still recovering from his own back problem.

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