|-ten M Fitzpatrick (Eng); -9 R McIlroy (NI), A Rai (Eng); -8 K Kitayama (USA), L Herbert (Australia), V Perez (Fra); -seven R MacIntyre (Sco), O Bekker (SA)|
|Others selected: -6 T Hatton (Eng); -5 J Smith (Eng), T Lewis (Eng); -4 F Molinari (Ita)|
Matt Fitzpatrick will take a one-stroke lead over Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy and fellow Englishman Aaron Rai in the final round of the Italian Open.
US Open champion Fitzpatrick’s two-under par 69 left him at 10 under.
McIlroy shot an upside-down 71 that included a birdie at the end, which ensured the world number two will be in Sunday’s final group with Fitzpatrick.
Rai shot a bogey-free 65 to move up 18 spots in the standings.
While Fitzpatrick failed to birdie his front nine, he recovered shots on the 10th and 12th before a four on the par five 18th gave him sole possession of the 54-hole lead.
McIlroy started with five straight pars and, while he birdied the sixth, the four-time major winner immediately dropped a shot the next.
A three-putt on the 12th par five cost the 33-year-old another shot, but he birdied the 16th and 18th – either side of a drop shot on the 17th – to stay firmly in the chase.
McIlroy, who clinched a third PGA Tour FedEx Cup title last month, tops the DP World Tour standings – and a victory this week would increase his advantage at the top of the standings.
Two-time DP World Tour winner Rai was the only player to complete his bogey-free run in windy conditions at the Marco Simone Club in Rome, which will host the Ryder Cup next year.
Frenchman Victor Perez hit 10 under twice on a roller coaster round of 69, however, a double bogey six on the 14th took him down to eight under. As he landed a stunning 76-foot eagle putt to get back to that mark, a bogey-bogey finish left the 30-year-old two strokes behind.
American Kurt Kitayama (67) and Australian Lucas Herbert (68) are alongside Perez with eight under and Scotsman Robert MacIntyre (67) a shot further.