|Sergio Garcia of Spain greets the gallery on the second hole during the third round of the Andalucia Valderrama Masters golf tournament in Sotogrande, southern Spain, October 29, 2011. REUTERS/Jon Nazca
Sotogrande, Spain - Sergio Garcia will look to make it two in a row for the first time in his career.
Garcia carded a four-under 67 Saturday to grab a two-stroke lead after three rounds of the Andalucia Masters.
The Spaniard, who won on his home course last week, completed 54 holes at Valderrama at six-under-par 207.
Christian Nilsson matched the low round of the week with his six-under 65 in round three. That helped him jump into a share of second place at minus-four. He was joined there by Miguel Angel Jimenez, who shot a 68 while playing alongside Garcia.
Richie Ramsay, who led after the first two rounds, stumbled to a two-over 73 and slid into fourth place at three-under-par 210. They are the only four players under par after three rounds.
Garcia got up and down for birdie on the par-five fourth to get his round going. He gave that stroke right back with a bogey on the fifth, but kicked in a short birdie effort on No. 6 to move back to three-under.
After a par on No. 7, Garcia birdied the eighth, but was still one behind Ramsay. The Scotsman birdied the third, but later dropped a shot on the seventh.
Ramsay tripped to a bogey on the ninth and that dropped him into a share of first with Garcia at minus-four. Garcia rolled in a birdie try at the 10th to move out in front.
However, he could only par the par-five 11th and that allowed Jimenez to join his countryman at five-under. Jimenez, who holed out for eagle on the par-five fourth, tapped in a short eagle putt on the 11th to jump to minus-five.
Garcia reclaimed the lead with an 18-foot birdie effort at the 13th. Garcia parred his next three holes, and as he did that, Jimenez tripped to a bogey at the 15th to slip to four-under.
Ramsay was fighting a balky driver on the back nine, but managed to par the first six holes of the second nine.
Garcia found a fairway bunker off the tee at 17. He tried to lay up with his second, but hit it too far and his ball stopped inside a hazard, and against a rock.
After taking off his shoes and rolling up his pants, Garcia blasted a shot into the right rough from inside the hazard. He chipped on, then two-putted for bogey.
"It was obviously was risky, but I liked my chances of getting up and down better from right of the green than the drop zone," Garcia admitted.
In the meantime, Ramsay had converted a seven-foot birdie chance on the 16th to join Garcia at five-under.
Garcia responded in fine fashion as he stuffed his approach at the par-four closing hole within two feet. He knocked that in for birdie to end at minus- six.
Ramsay's driver continued to be a problem. He hit it left off the tee at 17 and 18. Ramsay pitched back to the fairway at 17, then found a bunker over the green with his third. It took him three more to get in the hole, and that bogey dropped him to minus-four.
Another poor drive at the last, along with a poor chip-out attempt, led to a closing bogey, which dropped Ramsay three back with one round to go.
NOTES: If Garcia hangs on for the win, it will be his fifth in Spain and he'll qualify for next week's WGC - HSBC Champions, which he won in 2008...Oliver Wilson had a hole-in-one on the par-three 12th, but still stumbled to a one- over 72...Defending champion Graeme McDowell faltered to a 10-over 81 and fell 30 places into a tie for 51st...After there were just 14 sub-par rounds through two days, there were 15 such rounds on Saturday.