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Rich River trainee title beckons Cooper

Manly Golf Club's Taylor Cooper will start today's final round of the Rich River Classic two shots in the lead.

LUKE MCMANUS February 7, 2014 4:05am

Barring any mishaps during today’s fourth and final round, Manly Golf Club’s Taylor Cooper is poised to take out this year’s Rich River Classic.

The first-year trainee extended his overall lead by two shots yesterday, finishing the third round with a respectable one-under-par 71, to hand Cooper a commanding five-stroke advantage over former Echuca residents Aaron Coates (-3) and Adam Burdett (-2).

Cooper was able to follow on from his superb six-under-par 66 on Wednesday, a performance which included seven birdies and impeccable ball-striking despite testing conditions.

While Coates improved by one shot yesterday, Burdett had a tough day at the office for his two-over 74, undoing all his hard work which pocketed him a neat 67 after the second day.

Nick Simpson, who shares fourth spot with Stuart Meani, was another big mover yesterday.

After sharing the lead after the first round, Simpson returned to the clubhouse with 76 on Tuesday, before improving by seven shots yesterday afternoon to keep his tournament alive.

The starting field of 133 trainees has been cut down to 58 as golfers gear up for yet another warm afternoon at Rich River Golf Club today.

Forecast temperatures are expected to reach 38°C which is set to challenge the leading trio when they tee off about 10.10am.

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