Golf: Bad weather halts Malaysia Open again, event cut to three rounds with Dodt leading and Mardan last

Australia's Andrew Dodt at the second round of the Malaysia Open golf tournament on March 6, 2020. PHOTO: ASIANTOURGOLF/TWITTER

KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - The third round of the Malaysia Open golf tournament was halted on Saturday (March 7) because of stormy weather and postponed to the following day, with Australia's Andrew Dodt retaining his lead.

Sunday will remain the final day of the competition despite the delay, meaning the event has been reduced to 54 holes instead of the usual 72.

Storms have repeatedly interrupted play this week and on Saturday the action was abandoned even before the whole field could tee off.

"As a result of the delays and disruptions we have suffered, we have taken the decision to reduce the tournament to 54 holes," said Asian Tour director Fritz Katzengruber.

As it stands, Dodt has a two-day total of 13-under 131, holding a one-shot lead over China's Liu Yanwei.

American duo Jarin Todd and Trevor Simsby are trailing the leader by two shots.

Veteran Singapore golfer Mardan Mamat made the cut on the dot on one-under 143 but is two over for the third round and bottom among 74 golfers on one over for the tournament.

The other Singaporeans Koh Deng Shan (147) and Choo Tze Huang (154) did not progress further.

Dodt, who fired 63 and 68 in the first two rounds, is seeking his fourth Asian Tour title.

The US$1 million (S$1.4 million) tournament is making a return following a four-year absence, even as many sporting events are cancelled worldwide due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Organisers have put in place precautionary measures including temperature checks for players and spectators.

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