Defending champ Gallacher takes control in Dubai

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Defending champion Stephen Gallacher leads Omega Dubai Desert Classic going into the final round. (Getty Images)

Defending champion Stephen Gallacher leads Omega Dubai Desert Classic going into the final round. (Getty Images)

Defending champion Stephen Gallacher shot a third round 63 to emerge from the pack to lead the Dubai Desert Classic.

The Scot's nine-under round took him to 16-under-par overall and a two-shot advantage over world No 6 Rory McIlroy, who managed a 69 after topping the leaderboard at the halfway stage.

Gallacher played his last 10 holes in 10 under to put him in pole position to become the first golfer to successfully defend the tournament in Dubai.

"There's a lot of golf left to go but I will certainly be giving it my best shot," Gallacher told the European Tour website.

McIlroy wasn't happy with his game on Saturday. "I didn't drive the ball particularly well, I'm probably going to work on a few things on the range and I felt like I hit a lot of good putts that just didn't go in.

"I felt like I left a few out there but it was a tricky day and shooting anything under 70 wasn't a bad score. Obviously Stephen had a phenomenal round, 63 today is a really impressive effort."

World number one Tiger Woods shot 70 to occupy a share of 37th place on five under.

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