Australia's Todd Sinnott admits he will have to conquer a "tough and demanding" Oarai Golf Club if he harbours hope of walking away as the winner of the Asia Pacific Open Golf Championship on Sunday.
Sinnott battled through wet and windy conditions to shoot a two-under-par 68, leaving him at six-under 134 for the week and just two shots behind Japanese leader Kaito Onishi.
"Today’s a tough day, with the rain and wind. Honestly, I was just trying to stay really patient and just hang tough out there," said Sinnott, who won the Myanmar Open in 2017 when it was held as a co-sanctioned event by JGTO and Asian Tour.
"I can’t even remember the round, very tired. I hit it solid in patches, but I think it’s my short game that stood out.
"I was able to get up and down whenever I missed the green. By doing that, I was able to keep the round going and keep the momentum going.
Starting the day from the 10th tee, Sinnott sandwiched three birdies between a bogey on 13 and a double bogey on 17 to make the turn at 35.
He then recovered strongly on his outward nine, with birdies on holes five and six to finish in a three-way tie for second place with defending champion Rikuya Hoshino and The Crowns winner Yuki Inamori.
Sinnott believes the playing conditions can only get trickier over the weekend, especially with the gusting wind. However, he is relishing the challenge.
"It’s a tough course. The wind will get up, so it’s important to stay patient. It’s a demanding golf course. Need to hang in tough," Sinnott explained.
"There’s going to be bogeys, but just need to remain calm and try to make as many birdies as possible. I love playing challenging golf courses like this. You think your way around, hitting certain spots, keeping it below the hole.
"I like playing golf like that. That’s how golf is like in Melbourne, where I come from. We have to play really fast greens on difficult courses."
Thailand trio Prom Meesawat and Sadom Kaewkanjana and Kosuke Hamamoto, New Zealand's Ben Campbell and promising amateur Kazuma Kobori and American Ben Henson are the next best-placed international players in tied seventh on 137.