Manawatu golfer Josh Munn is one round away from being the first amateur to win two titles on the Charles Tour.
The 21-year-old, who held a four shot lead after two rounds at the Harewood Open, remained four shots clear of Owen Burgess after carding a three under par 69 in the third round today in Christchurch.
Munn got off to a fast start. He was four under through the opening five holes to make a statement to the rest of the field.
"I had a pretty solid round and I am stoked to be heading into the final round as the leader," he said. "I got off to a screamer of a start.
"It was awesome to make an eagle at the opening hole to say to all the boys, 'I am here'."
He made the turn in three under and, from there, looked to be in cruise control until a costly double bogey on the 15th saw him come back to the field. But Munn rallied with two birdies in the final three holes to restore his advantage.
The 2011 Muriwai Open Champion is one of only five amateurs - after Josh Geary, Troy Ropiha, Ben Campbell and Fraser Wilkin - to have won on the Charles Tour and would become the first to win multiple titles if he can get home tomorrow.
"That would be an honour. To be the first person to do that would be a special achievement."
In the women's field, New Zealand representative Emily Perry showed the value of experience in the third round with a two over par 74 - enough to claim a three-shot lead from Waikato teammate Sarah Bradley and Wellington No 1 Julianne Alvarez.
Perry, a six time winner on the Charles Tour, backed up her rounds of 71 and 72 with a two over par 74.
"I hit the ball the best I have in about a year, I just didn't make any putts," the 21-year-old said. "But I started off ok and then had a couple of bogeys in a row and then made nine straight pars coming home."
The New Zealand stroke play champion was enjoying the tight battle at the event, her last as an amateur before entering Ladies European Tour qualifying in Morocco in December.
"It is good to have some good competition and everyone is having under par rounds as well. I am looking forward to going out tomorrow and playing with the leading girls.
"It is quite a good goal to try and win my seventh Charles Tour title. I like that it has a pro atmosphere and that is where I am heading."