Cam Davis – file photo Masters Tournament

Cam Davis will head into tomorrow’s final round of the Masters as not only the leading Australian but with a genuine hope of challenging for the title in what promises to be yet another Sunday shootout at Augusta National.

Davis finds himself in a share of 6th place and five shots from the lead held by 2022 champion Scottie Scheffler after a round that saw him 2 under through nine before four dropped shots in the next four holes.

Davis would however birdie the 14th from 20 feet and produced an impressive par save at the 15th after finding the water. He would miss makeable birdie opportunities at 16 and 17 before a par at the last gave him a round of 73.

Given the rollercoaster today’s third round at the top of the leaderboard produced and the typical shootout that is so often tournament Sunday, then Davis is still very much up to his neck in contention.

“Scottie just birdied 18,” said Davis after his round. “We’re a little farther back than we were a few minutes ago. I hung in there quite well. Quite a few risky shots not panning out for me.

“It was playing tough, but I feel pretty proud walking away with 1-over after a few, it felt like, disasters while I was out there.

“I’m trying my hardest. “It’s hard out there, but I’m giving it everything I’ve got. I feel like today I wasn’t laying up, and I was giving it a good crack. Tomorrow hopefully we’ll make the right decisions in the moments and come away with a round that’s as good as we can make it.

“I’m trying, but it would be awesome to have a great day tomorrow.”

Just one shot behind Davis is Cam Smith who at 1 under is just five from the lead and still a potential challenger. Smith’s round of 72 consisted of one bogey and one par with many missed opportunities

“I couldn’t have done much more, I don’t think, with the irons today,” said Smith. “I think you had to struggle to get the ball in the hole. I think there were so many times out there where as close as you can hit it is kind of five or ten foot, and it’s breaking a foot or two down the hill.

“It was just one of those days I couldn’t quite match up the speed and the line. Yeah, I feel like it could have been probably a lot better today.

“I think I’m still in the golf tournament. The way that the golf course is playing, I feel really confident with my ball striking, probably the best I’ve felt in a while. Yeah, I feel like I’m in the golf tournament. It’s only one or two their way and one or two my way, and it’s really close.”

Adam Scott’s round of 70 was the equal second-best of the day improving him from the cutline to a share of 26th. His round was made even more impressive given the triple bogey he recorded when missing the green left at the 10th. His six birdies told the story of day of considerable improvement on the opening two rounds and further progress can be expected tomorrow.

Ryan Fox again began well with two early birdies to get within three of the lead and held his ground until struggling through Amen Corner where he dropped four shots in four holes.  He appeared to be holding his ground until a horror triple bogey at the 17th after his approach missed carrying the front bunker by a yard and he would then four-putt for a triple bogey. He would then add salt to the wound with a bogey at the last for a round of 77 and at 3 over he now finds himself in 26th place after beginning the day in a share of 6th.

“Probably everyone saw what happened on 17,” said Fox. “That’s one of the more unlucky breaks I’ve had on a golf course. It rolled in a crap lie and had no way of getting near it. Had a bit of a brain explosion on that putt and kind of ruined what was a really good round.

“I think if I had not had that flag on 17 and probably not making worse than 4, maybe had a good chance at 3 and I’m still in the golf tournament. That kind of screwed my head a little bit.

“Made a good bogey in the end up the last. I kind of don’t know what to think. I felt like I played really good and shot 77.

“It was nice to feel comfortable out there in that scenario, and just the golfing gods weren’t overly kind to me today. I had a lot of good shots that didn’t get rewarded. Looking at the scoring, it’s pretty damn tough out there. It’s beating everyone up this afternoon.

“Hopefully I can go a little earlier tomorrow. The golf course might be a little softer, and I can put a score together.”

Min Woo Lee and Jason Day are 41st and 45th respectively after rounds of 75 and 76.