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Gustafson bursts into lead at HP Open

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Drottningholm, Sweden (Sports Network) - Sophie Gustafson fired a nine-under 63 Saturday to leap into the lead after three rounds at the HP Open on the Ladies European Tour. Gustafson completed 54 holes at 15-under-par 201, two clear of . Vibeke Stensrud climbed into third place with a six-under 66 and stands at 11-under-par 205. Becky Morgan, Laura Davies and overnight leader Silvia Cavalleri are one stroke further back at minus-10.

Gustafson, who was the runner-up here last year, opened with a birdie at the first and followed with another at the second. She sank her third birdie at the par-five sixth hole.

She continued her roll with birdie at the par-five eighth and followed that with a two-putt birdie at the next.

Gustafson played steady early in her back nine before catching fire late. She rolled off four straight birdies to close out her bogey-free round.

"It was a fantastic day, I putted really well and it's always a thrill to go so low," Gustafson said. "I would say that the round in Ireland gave me more pleasure as it was 10-under and you don't do that very often, but this is a great round too."

Sorenstam, meanwhile is aiming for her sixth victory worldwide this season and Gustafson knows she'll have to hold off Sorenstam and the other top players.

"Annika is not the only one I have to beat tomorrow," said Gustafson. "I think there are three or four players in the mix though."

Sorenstam notched three birdies on the front and back nines but dropped a shot at the par-five 15th to fall two behind Gustafson.

"It seems like a lot of players are playing good, and I think I will need something in the mid-60s to have a chance," said Sorenstam. "It's exciting to be in the final group, I'll be in the middle of everything, I can keep an eye on what's going on and apply some pressure just to let them all know I'm here and that I am serious."

Suzann Pettersen and Iben Tinning, a pair of Solheim Cup players, share seventh place at nine-under-par 207. Lynnette Brooky and Karen Margrethe Juul are tied one shot back at minus-eight.

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