Fast forward to Friday evening and the long hitting veteran Queenslander holds the outright lead.
Hend posted an impressive 5-under 67 at Golf Club Gut Laerchenhof, the equal best score of the day, to grab a one stroke lead heading to the weekend.
Also in the mix is Nick Cullen, two strokes behind his countryman and sharing fourth place, while Wade Ormsby is just outside the top 10 at 2-under and sharing 11th.
Despite making four birdies and an eagle against a lone bogey, Hend said after his round he had eschewed his typically aggressive play given the difficulty of the course and conditions.
“I just played conservatively,” he told the European Tour website.
“Just trying to play on to the fairways and keep out of the long brown stuff. It's just patience.
“When it's this windy, if you're not patient you're going to get smashed, it's as simple as that.”
He said he felt birdies were a bonus and his mindset was more about avoiding dropped shots.
“If you try to push for a birdie or whatever, if you hit it in the rough and make a bogey, it's great,” he said.
“If you get less than a bogey then it's a bonus. It's just one of those golf courses that is quite punishing.”
Hend is chasing a third European Tour title but first on European soil while compatriot Cullen is playing for somewhat higher stakes.
The 2014 Australian Masters champion has battled to find a full time place on one of the game’s bigger international Tours since that win but could go a long way towards that goal with strong play this week.
The left-hander has limited status this season but earned a start this week with many of the Tour’s bigger names still in America following the US Open.
A bogey at the 16thhole, having played his way to within a shot of the lead, was the only blemish on Cullen’s card alongside five birdies and he has earned himself a tee time alongside Martin Kaymer on day three in the fourth to last group out.
Ormsby is the only other Australian to make the cut and is also in with a chance at the weekend with just four shots between he and Hend.
Back to back rounds of 71 have included eight birdies on what is a difficult course, that play suggesting his game and confidence are in good shape.
Hend’s two nearest pursuers are Sweden’s Henric Sturehed and Chile’s Nico Geyger, both 5-under, while local favourites Martin Kaymer and Maximillian Keifer are among the group at 4-under.
Adam Bland, Marcus Fraser, Sam Brazel, Lucas Herbert, Jason Norris and Jordan Zunic all fell outside the 4-over cut line.
SIGNATURE HOLES - 13TH AT BROOKWATER, QUEENSLAND:
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