Stephanie Meadow and Leona Maguire are battling just to have the best finish they can at the Amundi Evian Championship as neither took advantage of moving day in France.
The Irish pair stayed in the middle of the pack at Evian Golf Resort, with Meadow having to battle back from an early triple-bogey for a level-par 71 and Maguire slipping to a three-over 74 in her third round.
That leaves them in tied-51st at two-under-par and tied-68th at two-over-par respectively, and both will simply be looking to boost their finish for a slightly bigger payday as well as some vital Race to CME Globe points.
The win is certainly beyond the pair, with Meadow 15 shots back of leader Brooke Henderson, who maintained her lead at the top of the standings with a 68 on day three that has her two clear of So Yeon Ryu.
Meadow in particular will feel like she has more to offer on the final day as she dropped three shots at her third hole – the par-four 12th – and spent the rest of the round admirably clawing back that deficit.
The Jordanstown woman birdied the par-four 17th to get back on the right direction, but it was on her back nine – the front nine – that she flourished as having bogeyed the par-four first, birdies arrived at the second, sixth and ninth to get her back to where she started the day.
Currently projected to drop to 65th in the Order of Merit, Meadow will know there are vital points up for grabs on Sunday and, accordingly, will be eyeing up a much improved final round to boost her chances of maintaining her status on the LPGA Tour next season.
Meanwhile, Maguire had one of those rounds where she dropped a few early shots and never recovered as she limped home with a 74, her worst round of the week so far.
The European Solheim Cup star, who also started on the 10th, dropped back-to-back shots at 11 and 12 and, despite a birdie on the 13th, then double-bogeyed the par-four 17th to make the turn in three-over.
That was where she would finish her round as bogeys at the second and seventh book-ended birdies at the fourth and sixth, although she will take courage from last year’s historic fourth round 61 in Evian-les-Bains as she aims to finish on a high.
At the top, Henderson ensured she will take the lead into the final round of the tournament as she bids to win her second Major title, four birdies coming after her only bogey of the round at the first in a tidy 68 to set the pace at 17-under-par.
“It was wasn’t as good as the first two days but, yeah, really hung in there. Made some clutch par saves on back nine, which felt nice,” said Henderson.
“Not as many birdies on the card. Felt like the course is playing a little bit tougher for me today. Hopefully go out
tomorrow and continue to ball strike pretty well and hopefully make some putts.”
Ryu closed the gap, however, as a six-under 65, capped by three birdies in her last four holes, moved her up into second at 15-under, with America’s Sophia Schubert firing a 66 to move up to third at 13-under-par.
Spain’s Carlota Ciganda and Korea’s Sei-Young Kim are both 12-under after a 67 and 68 respectively, with Nelly Korda dropping to 11-under after a 71, where she is joined by World No.1 Jin Young Ko and England’s Charley Hull.
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