Super Swede Noren in record-breaking surge
AFP · 24 Jul 2011, 10:37
Published: 24 Jul 2011 10:37 GMT+02:00
The 29-year-old chopped two shots off the course record and established the joint second-highest lead in European Tour history as he moved to a huge 20 under par.
Only South Africa's Retief Goosen, who was 13 shots clear at the 2002 Johnnie Walker Classic, has been further ahead with one round left to play.
"Unreal, obviously," said Wales Open winner Noren, before heading to a friend's wedding to drink "water and diet coke".
"It was an amazing feeling. I never thought it would be possible to shoot these scores. Every shot went the way I wanted - I dont know what to say - I'm just so happy to play like this," he told www.europeantour.com.
"It's hard to sink in. I've never dreamt of playing like this here, I just thought if I make the cut I will be happy this week. Twenty under is better than I can imagine."
Noren had led by three overnight from India's Shiv Kapur.
He hit his first birdie of the day from six feet at the fifth while an eagle followed at the par five ninth to turn in a four under par 32.
Noren added further birdies on the 12th, 13th, 15th and 18th.
American Bubba Watson, 11 shots behind in second place, praised Noren after his round - comparing his performance to that of Rory McIlroy at last month's US Open.
"He's playing so good right now, like McIlroy in the States at the US Open," said Watson after a 69.
"When a guy's playing that good you can only keep going and do your best.
"I was just thinking one shot at a time. Played really good, just lost focus on the back nine and couldnt recover from it. One bad swing on 18 cost me a double."
Sweden's Christian Nilsson impressed with a 66 to join South African Jaco Van Zyl in a share of third on eight under.