Gwladys Nocera

She made three further birdies on the back nine, at the 10th, 15th and 18th holes to post her best score of the week, with a two putt at the last to clinch the lead from Nocera.

“I struck the ball better than I ever have and I made some good pars in the conditions,” admitted Hall, the 1997 LPGA rookie of the year.

“There were three or four holes where it was raining quite a lot and I think perhaps not making bogeys was more important than making birdies.”

After a year off from tournament golf, where she seriously considered getting a ‘normal’ job, Hall was delighted to be in pole position heading into the final round.

“It’s a bit like riding a bike: you don’t forget!” she joked, admitting that she had recently won the Florida Open on a US mini-tour in March.

Hall’s last victory on the LET was at the 1996 Women’s Welsh Open and she was also a Solheim Cup player in 1996 and 1998. With no playing privileges on the LET or LPGA Tours, she is playing on a sponsor’s invitation this week and a win would secure her full card for three years as well as a place in the US $3 million Evian Masters.