Kathmandu, April 1:

Deepak Acharya produced the best card of the tournament so far to take four-stroke lead on the third day of the Surya Nepal NPGA Tour Championship today.

Acharya carded three-under 69 today for a total of one-over 217. Acharya opened up a four-stroke lead over Sabin Sapkota going into the final round. Sapkota shot two-over 74 for a total of 221. Top pro and Tour leader Shiva Ram Shrestha shot even-par 72 to climb up to third with a total score of 222. CB Bhandari and Ramesh Nagarkoti were joint fourth at 225, while Rabi Khadka came in sixth at 226. Ram Thapa (227), Krishna Hari Mizar (228) and Deepak Neupane (229) are in the top 10.

Acharya, who was third after the second round, played one-under on the front nine that included birdies on the third and seventh holes after a bogey on the second hole. On the back nine, Acharya sank two birdies on the 11th and 16th holes in a bogey-free round.

“Today I could focus on my game than the previous days,” said Acharya. “Apart from the second hole, I played a mediocre round,” he added. Despite hitting on the water hazard on the par-five third hole, Acharya made it to 15 feet from the pin on the second

shot. Acharya described the shot as the turning point of the day.

Sapkota shot two-over 38 on the front nine and even-par 36 on the return. In all, he shot two birdies against four bogeys. Shiva Ram, who was tied fifth after the second round, carded even-par 72 to climb two spots up to third at six-over 222. He carded a total of six birdies against four bogeys and a double bogey on the15th.

Overnight leader Prasanna Upreti had a miserable day with the card of 11-over 83, that put him one-stroke behind leader Rupak Acharya in the amateur section. Rupak carded five over 77 for a total of 228. Dhana Thapa lies third at 231.