(Algarve, Portugal – June 25 2005) Nina Reis from Sweden and Gwladys Nocera from France share the lead heading into the final round of the €300, 000 Algarve Ladies Open of Portugal.
Reis won her third professional title at last week’s Felix Finnish Open, at Aura GC, in Finland, where she beat fellow LET player Rikke Hakkarainen by three shots, finishing with a four-under-par total. She has also won twice before as a professional, at the ‘Telia Grand Opening’ in 2002 and 2003.
“I’m excited and a little nervous about playing in the final group for the first time on the LET tomorrow,” said Reis, who supports Swedish soccer team IFK Boys Gothenburg.
“I only just found out this Tuesday that I would be playing in this tournament so everything from here is a bonus.”
“Today I hit 17 greens and played really solid, I made quite a few putts but I could have made a few more. It wasn’t really windy this morning, it just started to pick up on my last two or three holes and I think that this course is in good condition considering they only had a little time to prepare it for this tournament.”
With her coach of five years, Marcus Forsbohl, caddying for her this week, Reis is could easily make a strong charge in the final round tomorrow, but she will face a strong challenge from Nocera, who, like Reis, is hungry for her first victory on the LET.
The French woman has finished runner up twice this year already at the Thailand Ladies Open and the Siemens Ladies Austrian Golf Open, but second place is not good enough for her this week in Portugal. “This time I want to win,” admitted Nocera, adding, “I’m going to have to ask for a little luck tomorrow from St Andrews, the God of golf.”
“It was a tough day today with the wind swirling but I tried to take advantage of it. I hit a really good drive 300 yards on 12. If you have a good distance then its fine and you can just play the same shots as usual.
“This course is tricky if you miss the green on the wrong side you can get into trouble.”
Considering the tough and gusty wind conditions, which swirled between the western Atlantic coast and the Monchique Hills to the north all afternoon, Nocera’s was a strong showing, which marked her out as a force to beat tomorrow.
The cut fell at five over par and 69 players head into the final round.