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Rory McIlroy leads in Dubai with Shane Lowry three behind

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Rory McIlroy will take a one-shot lead into the final round of the DP World Tour Championship after a birdie on the last handed him a third-round 67 to get to 14 under par in Dubai. Shane Lowry sits three shots behind on 11 under after a topsy-turvy round of 71.

McIlroy is a two-time winner of the European Tour’s season-ending event and a third victory would make it back-to-back wins worldwide after his PGA Tour triumph at the CJ Cup last month.

He has not achieved that feat since 2014, when he won the British Open, WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and US PGA Championship — his fourth and last Major success to date — on consecutive starts.

That looked a distant prospect as he lost his first three matches in September’s Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits, where his victory over Xander Schauffele in the singles was followed by an emotional interview in which he said he felt he had let his team-mates down.

Since then he has parted ways with swing coach Pete Cowen and returned to long-time mentor Michael Bannon, revealing this week that he was taking more personal ownership of his game.

The move seems to be paying dividends and he will head into the final round over the Earth Course at 14 under, one shot clear of England’s Sam Horsfield and two ahead of Scot Robert MacIntyre and Swede Alexander Bjork.

“I’m looking forward to it,” McIlroy said. “I’m right where I want to be. I want to be contending on Sundays in golf tournaments and feel like I’m back to playing the way I should and the way that will get me back contending. I’m excited. I’m excited to go out there and try to pick up another one.”

Entering the day a shot off the lead after a double bogey on the last on day two, McIlroy led by two as he recovered from an opening bogey with birdies on the second, third, sixth, ninth, 10th and 14th.

There was drama at the Par 3 17th when his ball held up on a rock above the water. After some deliberation McIlroy opted to play the shot and managed to chunk it across to the far fringe from where he very nearly holed his pitch shot for a miraculous par. In the end it was a bogey but a birdie four at the Par 5 18th got him back into the lead on his own after Horsfield bogeyed the same hole.

McIlroy plays his shot from the rocks at the 17th. Photo: Andrew Redington/Getty Images
McIlroy plays his shot from the rocks at the 17th. Photo: Andrew Redington/Getty Images

Lowry started the day in a tie for the lead and in the final group but stalled a little bit with a bad stretch around the turn.

After picking up birdies on the second and seventh to lead on his own, the 2019 British Open champion made a double bogey at the eighth after finding a fairway bunker off the tee, splashing out and failing to get up and down from the side of the green with his fourth shot.

Things would then get worse before they got better for Lowry as he was forced to take an unplayable at the Par 4 10th, resulting in a bogey five.

However, he managed to fight back to keep his chances alive by rolling in a long birdie putt at the 11th before making a 20 foot putt to save par on the 12th.

Another birdie would follow at the 14th and four straight pars to finish for a round of 71 and a total of 11 under, three behind McIlroy.

Shane Lowry plays his second shot to the 12th hole. Photo: Andrew Redington/Getty Images
Shane Lowry plays his second shot to the 12th hole. Photo: Andrew Redington/Getty Images

A two-time winner in 2020, Horsfield is looking for the biggest victory of his career and carded a 69 on day three after holding a share of the lead after 36 holes.

“It was a little sloppy, it wasn’t my best stuff,” he said.

“I’ve played with Rory a few times. He’s a good dude and I’m really looking forward to it. Just try to play good golf again and see what happens.”

MacIntyre holed a 72-foot putt for birdie on the fourth and added an eagle on the seventh but also bogeyed the last after finding the water in his 67.

“I’m playing great and I’m committing to every shot and I’m accepting everything,” he said. “That’s when I play my best golf.”

British Open champion Collin Morikawa carded a 69 to sit three shots off the lead and remained in pole position to become the first American to take the Race to Dubai title and be crowned Europe’s number one.

DP World Tour Championship leaderboard (British unless stated, Par 72)

202 Rory McIlroy (NIrl) 65 70 67

203 Sam Horsfield 68 66 69

204 Robert MacIntyre 68 69 67, Alexander Bjoerk (Swe) 68 67 69

205 Joachim B. Hansen (Den) 67 70 68, Collin Morikawa (USA) 68 68 69, Shane Lowry (Irl) 69 65 71, John Catlin (USA) 69 65 71

206 Martin Kaymer (Ger) 68 68 70

207 Dean Burmester (Rsa) 69 69 69, Johannes Veerman (USA) 68 72 67, Marcus Armitage 68 72 67

208 Matthew Fitzpatrick 70 69 69, Nicolai Hoejgaard (Den) 68 71 69, Rasmus Hoejgaard (Den) 70 69 69, Jeff Winther (Den) 70 69 69

209 Tyrrell Hatton 70 73 66, Paul Casey 70 69 70, Thomas Pieters (Bel) 73 66 70, Ian Poulter 73 69 67

210 Min-Woo Lee (Aus) 72 69 69, Jason Scrivener (Aus) 71 69 70

211 Abraham Ancer (Mex) 72 69 70, Tommy Fleetwood 70 72 69, Lucas Herbert (Aus) 72 69 70, Thomas Detry (Bel) 69 70 72, Rafael Cabrera (Spa) 70 70 71, Adria Arnaus (Spa) 75 68 68, Joakim Lagergren (Swe) 70 71 70, Sergio Garcia (Spa) 68 69 74

212 Jamie Donaldson 70 68 74, Christiaan Bezuidenhout (Rsa) 67 75 70, Grant Forrest 70 70 72, Antoine Rozner (Fra) 74 70 68, Victor Perez (Fra) 74 69 69, Patrick Reed (USA) 72 72 68

213 Billy Horschel (USA) 74 70 69, Richard Bland 73 69 71, Will Zalatoris (USA) 70 73 70, Laurie Canter 74 71 68, Danny Willett 75 71 67, Garrick Higgo (Rsa) 73 69 71, Maximilian Kieffer (Ger) 70 70 73

214 Justin Harding (Rsa) 71 72 71, Sean Crocker (USA) 69 73 72

215 Masahiro Kawamura (Jpn) 74 73 68

216 Guido Migliozzi (Ita) 73 73 70, Adrian Meronk (Pol) 68 74 74

217 Francesco Laporta (Ita) 71 74 72, Tapio Pulkkanen (Fin) 67 74 76

218 James Morrison 71 74 73

227 Bernd Wiesberger (Aut) 76 76 75

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Liverpool ONE welcomes Tessuti (GB)

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Grosvenor has announced that designer retailer, Tessuti, has opened its new global flagship store at Liverpool ONE, demonstrating the brand’s ongoing vote of confidence in the destination. The new location on Paradise Street follows Tessuti’s consistently strong performance at Liverpool ONE and spans two floors measuring 22,000ft². Boasting Tessuti’s biggest store to date, this is four times the size of the previous Liverpool ONE site. The store interiors have been styled with a subtle nod to classic Italian architecture whilst incorporating state-of-the-art technical features, combining classic design with an industrial-chic colour palette and cutting-edge digital screens. Working with local Liverpudlian digital and production agency Liquid, the new Tessuti store has exclusive instore stills and videos showcasing exciting campaigns; the first of which is rumoured to feature Liverpool stars Stephen Graham, Abbey Clancy, Miles Kane and Chelcee Grimes.

 

Aligning with Liverpool ONE’s community ethos, Tessuti’s new global flagship will also support the vibrant community in the heart of Liverpool, championing local businesses through collaborations, pop-ups, and in-store events.

 

Alison Clegg, Managing Director, Asset Management, Grosvenor, commented: “Tessuti’s commitment to Liverpool ONE, through its relocation within the destination and decision to make the new store its global flagship, strengthens our position as one of Europe’s leading retail and leisure destinations. The impressive growth trajectory of Tessuti within Liverpool is a great indication of the potential for success and expansion of other brands that join Liverpool ONE.”

 

Chris Rowan, Director of Brand & Customer Connection at Tessuti, added: “The opening of our global flagship at Liverpool ONE is a huge moment for us. Liverpool is an urban hub for international fashion retailers, so upsizing and relocating within the city’s leading retail and leisure destination was a natural next step. We feel confident that it is the ideal home for our flagship location, and are excited to offer Liverpool ONE’s visitors our most stylish project yet.”

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What you need to know about having a home swimming pool

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This summer, it’s not just sales of rosé wine and ice cream that have rocketed during the heatwave. Interest in swimming pools has also surged.

‘This sweltering summer has undoubtedly inspired people to install swimming pools,’ says Sallie Leslie-Golding of the Swimming Pool and Allied Trade Association (SPATA). 

‘There are now 270,000 in-ground pools in the UK, with about 65 per cent of them in the southern half of the country.’

There is something incredibly glamorous about a Hockney-blue pool. But how does the reality match up to the imagery?

Refreshing: Church House in Potterne, Wiltshire, is on sale for £1.95m. Interest in swimming pools has surged with the hot weather

Refreshing: Church House in Potterne, Wiltshire, is on sale for £1.95m. Interest in swimming pools has surged with the hot weather

‘It’s been wonderful to be able to take a swim at the end of a long day,’ says Felicity Cooper, 55, who in 2006 installed a 12m x 6m pool outside her country house in Potterne, near Devizes, Wiltshire. 

‘It has also been great for the children, Lily and Ryan, who learnt to swim here.’

Felicity stresses the importance of finding the right setting for a new pool. 

She ensured hers was west-facing to catch the evening sun; then she went to the trouble of digging out a mini-amphitheatre so that the displaced earth formed a windbreak around the pool itself.

‘The pool is the optimum distance from the house, being not so near that it detracts from the garden and not so far away that anyone in trouble would not be heard by those inside.

‘It is far from trees so few leaves blow into the water and, with the children in mind, it has a top quality safety cover. Felicity’s six-bedroom Jacobean stone house standing in 1.7 acres is for sale for £1.95 million.

Opinions vary as to whether an outdoor pool helps or hinders a house sale. Some think that the hassle of maintenance may be off-putting to buyers. However, the property buying agent, Jonathan Harington, disagrees.

‘I have had many clients come to me with a pool on their wishlist of luxuries,’ he says. ‘But I have never had anyone say they wouldn’t buy a house because of the pool. If they felt strongly they could easily fill it in anyway.’

Yet owning a swimming pool is an expensive hobby. An above-ground pool — like a giant paddling pool — costs from £1,500 to £15,000. These pools may not quite cut it in terms of glamour, but their lower water capacity means maintenance costs are more reasonable.

For those looking at a more substantial in-ground pool, one with a liner finish of PVC will cost about £75,000. A concrete pool, finished with mosaic tiles, marbled plaster or paint will be about £125,000.

Larger projects can easily cost hundreds of thousands of pounds. 

You may opt for an infinity pool — a pool designed with an edge that gives the illusion that the water is overflowing. 

Those who want to improve their fitness may have a counter current device installed; the equivalent of swimming on a treadmill.

Many pool owners are interested in sustainability and heating the pool with solar panels is popular, as are covers that help heat retention.

Maintaining an outdoor swimming pool is expensive. The cost of heating and chemicals has increased so buyers should budget for at least £8 to £10 a day, dependent on the weather, according to SPATA.

Anyone fancying a workout in their own home may be interested in Ivy Cottage, Grendon, Northamptonshire.

Outside, the four-bedroom cottage is a 10m x 5m pool neatly positioned in the north-west corner to catch the sun.

‘After swimming in the pool, you could go running, riding or cycling on the countless trails nearby,’ says Ian Denton, of Jackson Stops. ‘It’s a lifestyle amenity in your own garden.’ Ivy Cottage is for sale for £825,000.

On the market… splash out 

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Radisson launches new resort in Greece

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Radisson Hotel Group has launched its latest Greek resort in Skiathos. Skiathos, the westernmost of the Sporades islands, is known for its stunning coastline of more than 60 beaches with soft sand and clear blue waters, as well as sea caves, impressive rock formations, and hiking trails on the tree-covered hills along the north shore made famous as the location for the filming of Mamma Mia. The island’s Byzantine churches and monasteries, Venetian-style Bourtzi fortress, and Papadiamantis House with its typical architecture are important parts of the island’s rich history.

 

The resort’s 84 rooms and suites are decorated in a modern, minimalist style, and most of them offer views of the hotel pool or the sea. Private balconies or terraces are available in select rooms, and the resort’s biggest suites feature private whirlpools for ultimate privacy and relaxation. The resort is ideally suited for weddings with its own on-site orthodox chapel and versatile outdoor pool area that offers receptions with stunning views. The main all-day dining restaurant celebrates Greek and Mediterranean flavors on its lunch and dinner menus. The poolside bar offers breakfast treats and late-night snacks as well as a wide selection of drinks and an extensive wine list. For guests looking to keep up their fitness routine, a well-equipped gym is available.

 

“We are excited to offer our guests a fantastic resort experience on the beautiful island of Skiathos, as we continue to expand our Greek resort portfolio. Radisson Resort Plaza Skiathos allows guests to switch off and relax surrounded by stunning natural beauty,” said Yilmaz Yildirimlar, Area Senior Vice President at Radisson Hotel Group.

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