Minjee Lee fired a third-round 66 to take a two-shot lead at the 2018 Saudi Ladies International.
Lee took a shot clear of Spain’s Carolina Lorente in the rain-disrupted event in Jeddah.
The New South Wales-based star fired five birdies and no bogeys in the third round to finish at 20-under-par on the Jazan Golf Club course.
I have never experienced the rain while playing golf here,” she said. “The putting was not great today, which is what you expect on day one of a tournament, but the back nine in the third round was strong.
“I made only three bogeys throughout the tournament and I am really happy with my score today.”
Lorente shot a 69 for a tally of 207. That placed her a shot behind first-placed Minjee Lee, but she had three more pars on the back nine to take the best position.
Lee is the reigning Australian Ladies Masters and Dubai Ladies Masters champion. She turned professional after her 2016 LET victory and is continuing to build on her title wins and her impressive start to the 2019 season.
“It is a great tournament because there are some of the best players in the world in the field,” Lee said. “I am feeling like I am in my playing groove at the moment and on top of that, I am heading out to work on my golf swing every day and I hope that pays off when the time comes to play my next major.”
The Saudis have selected the event as part of their initiative to promote female golf in the kingdom, which has now hosted its second Ladies European Tour event.
Another New South Wales-based golfer, Alice Jones (NSW), is tied for 18th, eight shots behind the leader.
On Sunday, Lee will tee-off alongside Lorente and Briton Jodi Ewart Shadoff.