UCD student Emma Fleming is practically pinching herself at being tied for the lead heading into the final round of her first Student Tour Series tournament in Portugal.
Fleming hung tough with serial winner Lorna McClymont and added a one-over 73 to her opening 72 to share the lead with the Scot on one-over through 36 holes.
“I’m obviously happy with where I am in my first Student Tour Series tournament,” said the 18-year-old Irish international.
“I haven’t played with Lorna before and it was great playing with her today because she’s an unreal player.
“That’s what we all want: to play with better players so we can test ourselves. I’m looking forward to tomorrow. No one has shot under par yet. If I can make a few putts tomorrow I can hopefully shoot an under par score and see we’ll what happens.”
Fleming, the women’s Bridgestone Order of Merit winner, was the overnight leader but looked to be on the ropes after a front nine of 39 following a double bogey six on the 4th and a bogey on 9.
To her credit, the Elm Park star rallied with birdies on 12 and 17 to jump back into a share of the lead and she is loving every minute of her Student Tour Series experience.
“I’ve been looking forward to playing in the Student Tour Series,” she said.
“Oh my gosh, it’s a great set up. It’s very much the European version of American college golf, and for us to play on courses like this is fantastic. It’s an amazing experience, and I’m looking to use these events to help improve my game.”
Just two shots back of the leaders is Maynooth Univeristy’s Kate Lanigan who is chasing her second Student Series win having won on her maiden bow in Italy.
Lanigan lies in third place on her own on three-over after a gutsy level-par 72.
Meanwhile, in the men’s section, David Kitt (Maynooth Univeristy) is the best of the Irish on one-over after a second round of 70.
He is eight shots off the lead held by William Leu of Sweden.