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Hoey in command with a round to go

Michael Hoey will take a three-shot lead over compatriot Graeme McDowell into the final round of the Dunhill Links Championship after another excellent day for Northern Ireland's golfers.

Hoey carded a 66 at Carnoustie to finish 18 under par, while former US Open champion McDowell posted a third consecutive 67 at St Andrews to claim outright second on 15 under.

Former Open champion Louis Oosthuizen marked his return to St Andrews with a 69 to lie 14 under, with a seven-strong group on 13 under including world number one Luke Donald, fellow Englishman Simon Dyson, US Open champion Rory McIlroy and three-time major winner Padraig Harrington.

Donald and Dyson both shot 63 at St Andrews, equalling the course record for the extended layout set by McIlroy in the Open last year.

"I'm very, very happy with the day," said Dyson, who is 30th in the world rankings after two wins this year.

"I didn't realise my birdie putt on the 18th was for the course record otherwise I might have hit it a bit harder. But it's a good name to share the record with."

Around an hour later he was also sharing it with Donald, who did manage to pick up a shot at the 18th for his ninth birdie of a flawless round as he looks to become the first man to finish top of the money list on both sides of the Atlantic in the same season.

Donald currently enjoys a lead of £1.4million over McIlroy on the European Tour's Race to Dubai, but his lead over Webb Simpson on the PGA Tour is just £44,000 after he overtook the American by finishing joint third in the Tour Championship on Sunday.

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