"It was a slow start and I'm disappointed not to be a couple better really", he said.
That did not last long as an excellent tee-shot by Zanotti at the par three 11th helped cut the gap to one and with Hend missing the green on the same hole, they shared the lead at 11 under.
Australia's Scott Hend has been denied a third European Tour victory after losing on a third extra hole to England's Matt Fitzpatrick at the European Masters.
Fitzpatrick earned a 450,000-euro ($542,000) prize for his first win since the season-ending World Tour Championship in Dubai last November.
He lost the same event in a play-off to Alex Noren previous year and will rue missing his putt on the second additional hole, costing him the chance to land a third European Tour title.
Hend pocketed $A450,000 for his troubles, but it was the second time in as many years he has been denied the title in a play-off.
Both carded 14-under totals of 266 having had early starts Sunday to complete their delayed third rounds.
Hurricane Irma pulls ocean away from Bahamas shore
She called it the hurricane "bulge" - where water is drawn into the centre of the storm and the shape of the ocean is changed. But not many people could predict what the storm did to the ocean surrounding a few small Bahamian islands.
Both players were tied for the lead at 14-under to go into a play-off.
Fabrizio Zanotti and Tyrrell Hatton finished in a tie for third on 11-under, while Finland's Mikko Ilonen was able to finish fifth one shot back. "He's a good champion".
Swede Alexander Björk, Thai Thongchai Jaidee and South African Richard Sterne were all at eight under with holes to complete when play resumes at 8.00am on Sunday morning.
Fitzpatrick surged after a steady start to the final round, and led by two shots when he birdied the par-3 16th.
The Englishman actually held a two-shot advantage at one stage, before Hend's birdie at 15th made it one and then Fitzpatrick bogeyed 17th.
Kiwi No.2 Fox registered eight birdies in his five-under 65 at Crans-sur-Sierre Golf Club but was let down by a double bogey on the par-four 12th hole and a lone bogey.