Jonathan Caldwell kept the pedal to the floor after a day one 66 to return a three-under par 69 that puts him right in the mix ahead of the final day of the EuroPro Tour’s Matchroom Sport Championship at Harleyford Golf Club.
The Clandeboye professional found five birdies to move to a share of third on nine-under par for the tournament, just one shot off the pace.
A winner on the tour last term, Caldwell won’t be overawed by Friday’s final round as he goes in search of a second EuroPro victory – he gets underway at 11.51am.
Meanwhile, Dermot McElroy sprung into life on day two as he scored a sizzling five-under par 67 to bolt up the board.
The Ballymena professional posted four birdies and an eagle as he moved just outside the top-10 into a share of 11th at minus-seven.
If ever it was possible to be frustrated after signing for a seven-under par 65, perhaps Royal Dublin’s Niall Kearney could have a case after closing with a double-bogey 6 at his final hole.
Needing something special after opening the tournament with a three-over par 75, Kearney was electric in making the turn in just 29 wallops, carding seven birdies and an eagle before his final hole blemish.
Still, from looking likely to miss the cut, the Dubliner has bolted into a tie for 31st at four-under par and he’ll be hoping for more of the same on Friday to continue his positive start to the campaign.
Meanwhile, four-under was the same number as Headfort’s Brian Casey who returned his second successive 70 to comfortably make the final day.
Naas professional, Conor O’Rourke birdied three of his closing four holes in a clutch 69 that saw him advance on minus-four while after his top-10 finish last week, Whitehead’s John Ross Galbraith carded a round of 70 of his own to sneak into the last round at minus-three.
With the 36-hole cut falling at three-under par, unfortunately Kilkenny’s Luke Donnelly fell two shots shy after returning rounds of 72/71 for a minus-two total. Meanwhile, two level par rounds wasn’t enough to see Old Conna’s Neil O’Briain through to the last day while Tullamore’s Stuart Grehan (+1), Owen Crooks (+5) and Headfort’s Joe Dillon (+5) all fell short of the required mark.
Highlights of The Matchroom Sport Championship will air on Sky Sports on 11, June 2019.
Full Scoring HERE