Gustafson – defending champion

“I’m playing well. Sophie’s playing well too and some of the other players are up there so it won’t be easy. I’ll have to see how I go tomorrow. If I play like I did the last two days I’ll have a very good chance.

“She (Gustafson) won last week in horrible conditions and here she is again this week. At the beginning of the week in my mind I felt like if I could finish ahead of Sophie I would probably win.”

Davies began to make her charge with a birdie at the eighth hole and then hit her six-iron to six feet at the ninth, enabling her to sink an eagle putt and reach the turn in three-under.

She was four-under on the back nine, with birdies at the 10th, 13th, 15th, 17th and 18th – and a bogey at the short 16th where she three-putted. She sank a 40 foot putt at the par-three 13th, where she had a triple bogey the previous day and was visibly pleased.

Afterwards, she revealed the key to her success.

“I’m just enjoying it really. Not practising too much, just playing lots of tournaments and keeping everything fresh by not standing on the range for hours and hours a day,” she said.

Davies last won over 12 months ago at the SAS Masters in Norway, the year she also won the Ladies European Tour’s New Star Money List for the seventh time, but she was keen not to get ahead of herself.

Gustafson, who has not dropped a shot in 36 holes, was keen to let her presence on the leader board be felt. When a journalist suggested to her that Davies was running away with the title, she replied with a resolute: “She isn’t running anywhere yet!”

Gustafson carded four birdies and an eagle at the par-five ninth hole for her 66 and is aiming for her 23rd career title in a 13-year career.