Liam Abom admitted he was in cruise control on day two of the R&A Student Tour Series in Le Golf National as he burst into a two-shot lead heading into the final round after a blistering five-under 66.
The Maynooth University student is four-under for the tournament after posting six birdies and just one bogey on 13 around the Aigle course as he hunts a maiden Student Series title.
Abom who is in his first year in Maynooth studying birdied 17 and 18 to pull clear of the field.
“I didn’t really put myself under too much pressure,” said Abom, a member of Edmondstown Golf Club, Dublin. “I didn’t have to have a great putting day. I was just cruising along hitting fairways and greens.”
Abom roared out of the traps with a hat trick of birdies from the third before a fourth birdie in seven holes saw him turn in 31.
The 19-year-old arts student put on a display of golfing maturity beyond his years and he knows another patient approach will be the key to getting over the line on Wednesday.
“I’m looking forward to playing the Ryder Cup course again,” Abom said. “I know I just have to stay patient, keep it in play and take your chances when they come.”
It looks set to be a shootout between Maynooth University and Halmstad University with three players from each college occupying the top six spots on the leaderboard and just four shots separating them.
Ballybofey & Stranorlar man Ryan Griffin has continued his fine start to the season and he is the highest ranked player at the top of the leaderboard at 1,038th in the World Amateur Golf Rankings.
The Donegal man already has a Student Tour Series win under his belt when he was joint winner with fellow Maynoothian Jordan Boles in Troia last February and he will be leaning on that experience in the final round.
“Troia gave me a lot of confidence, and I’ll be drawing on that tomorrow,” said Griffin who is in a share of 2nd place on two-under.
Dundalk’s Eoin Murphy is the sixth and final player under-par after rounds of 72 and 70.
There is a catalogue of Irish and Maynooth interest further down the leaderboard. Aaron Marshall and David Muldowney are still in the hunt at level-par while Evan Shipp, Conor Clarke (Queen’s University) and Darragh Flynn can’t be ruled out at one-over-par.
Meanwhile Annabel Greham maintained her bid for a top-10 finish in the women’s section after rounds of 78 and 77 moved her to twelve-over and eighth place.
The Maynooth University student trails serial winner Lorna McClymont by nine shots after the Scot – who is also Irish Women’s Open champion shot rounds of 75 and 71.
Ellen O’Gorman is fourteen-over while Irish Intervarsities winner Kate Dwyer is two shots further back.