Amelia Garvey (Kaiapoi Golf Club) will take a two-shot lead over Chantelle Cassidy (Riverside Golf Club) in the New Zealand Womens Stroke Play Championship after making eagle on the final hole at the Hastings Golf Club today.

Garvey started the round three ahead of her rivals and was on fire on the front nine with birdies on the 1st 3rd and 5th hole. Such was Garveys dominance over the front nine that she had increased the lead to seven shots and looked like racing away with the title.

However, a wayward drive on the 14th and a careless tee shot on the 16th saw her drop to nine under par for the tournament and come back slightly to the rest of the field.

Meanwhile Chantelle Cassidy was mounting her charge in an attempt to once again have her name engraved on the Mellsop Cup.

Cassidy roared into life on the back nine with birdies on the 11th, 13th and 15th holes and got within a shot of the lead on the 16th. Both Garvey and Cassidy had good birdie chances on the 17th which they couldnt convert.

Heading down the 18th Garvey launched a booming drive leaving 155m to the flag and her crisply struck six iron landed two metres from the hole which she calmly converted. Not to be outdone Cassidy managed a birdie of her own and will pose a big threat starting only two back tomorrow.

After the round Garvey was pleased with her efforts.

"I was pretty steady today, a lot of pars, it was kind of frustrating as the putter wasnt very hot but Ill take it. Three under is pretty good and Ive put myself in a good spot for tomorrow."

"I hit one close on the first and two putted for birdie on three and made a good one on five but I was just trying to stick to my own game. It got a bit frustrating on the back nine when I was making a lot of pars and then Chantelle started holing a couple of good putts."

"I wanted to hang onto the lead and not get angry for letting that lead go, I stayed in a pretty good mindset and started to play my own game and hit greens and make as many puts as possible.

"That eagle will bring me back tomorrow, to hole one on the last was very pleasing."

Garvey was in a confident mood after the round with the belief that she has the game to take out the title tomorrow.

"Ive played enough tournaments and been in contention enough to know that I have to not think about the end result, take it one shot at a time, have fun out there and embrace it. Youre not going to have many chances to be in contention for your national title. Winning would mean a lot", she said.

Rose Zheng (Pakuranga Golf Club) and Alanna Campbell (Omanu Golf Club) will be hoping it doesnt become a two horse race. Both players share third place on six under par five back from the lead held by Garvey.

The first players tee off tomorrow at 7:45am with the leaders teeing off at 8:35am

2017 New Zealand Womens Stroke Play Championship

Hastings Golf Club

March 23-26

Par 74

Leading Scores after Round Three

211 Amelia Garvey (Kaiapoi) 73 67 71

213 Chantelle Cassidy (Riverside) 74 70 69

216 Rose Zheng (Pakuranga) 74 71 71, Alanna Campbell (Omanu) 76 67 73

218 Brittney Dryland (Titirangi) 75 71 72

219 Juliana Hung (Russley) 73 72 74

222 Sato Tajima (Rotorua) 74 75 73, Carmen Lim (Windross Farm Golf Course) 74 74 74

223 Jessica Huang (Pakuranga) 75 76 72

227 Siyi Keh (Pakuranga) 76 77 74

228 Subin Wui (Pupuke) 73 76 79

229 Caryn Khoo (Pakuranga) 75 81 73, Vivian Lu (Royal Auckland) 75 77 77

230 Tessa Jane McDonald (Poverty Bay) 79 77 74

232 Fiona Xu (Pakuranga) 78 78 76

233 Olive Tapu (Christchurch) 77 79 77, Sara Deam U25 (Napier Inc.) 76 79 78, Darae Chung (Shandon) 80 74 79

234 Zoann Huang (St. Andrews of Hamilton (Hamilton)) 79 79 76

235 Yoonjeong Huh (Gulf Harbour Country Club) 75 83 77, Erika Cui (Boulcott's Farm Heritage) 76 78 81

238 Shontalia William (Boulcott's Farm Heritage) 83 77 78

239 Miree Jung (Titirangi) 76 83 80, Caitlin Maurice (Omokoroa) 84 75 80, Tara Raj (Wanganui) 79 79 81

243 Mimi Guo (Royal Auckland) 84 76 83

247 Mary Chen (Remuera) 86 81 80

248 Rachel Eder (Clearwater) 84 84 80

249 Jasmine Rou (Russley) 85 82 82

252 Mudra Lakhani (Manawatu) 89 83 80

255 Shardae Bulkeley (Mangawhai) 89 81 85

260 Josephine Kerr (Poverty Bay) 82 87 91

262 Lily Griffin (Manawatu) 86 89 87

- This story has been automatically published using a media release from Golf NZ