Murphy and Ryan lead R&A Scholars Tournament at St Andrews
 Maynooth's John Murphy. Picture:  Pat Cashman

Maynooth's John Murphy. Picture: Pat Cashman

Maynooth's John Murphy and UCD's Chloe Ryan hold the lead going into the final rounds of their respective events in The R&A Foundation Scholars Tournament at St Andrews.

Murphy continued his run of fine form when he added a sensational 64 to his opening 68 to lead by one from Stirling's Laird Sheppard on eight-under-par.

The Kinsale star, a recent winner of the Munster Student's Championship at Cork Golf Club, had five birdies in his morning round on the Eden Course, then made seven more on the same track in the afternoon.

The Cork ace came home in a blistering four-under-par 31 in an event which awards the men's winner a place in the European Palmer Cup team to play the USA in Atlanta in June and the women's champion a Ladies European Tour start.

Murphy's Maynooth teammate Stuart Grehan (already selected for the Palmer Cup) is tied third on five-under with the in-form Robin Dawson, who clinched his third runner-up finish of the season in the European Nations Cup in Spain on Saturday, solo fifth on three under after rounds of 67 and 70.

Kevin LeBlanc, another Maynooth star, is six back in a share of sixth with West of Ireland champion Jonny Yates 14th on one-under.

 Chloe Ryan and Mathias Eggenberger won The R&A Foundation Scholars Tournament in 2016

Chloe Ryan and Mathias Eggenberger won The R&A Foundation Scholars Tournament in 2016

Defending champion Ryan, who also plays out of Castletroy and Lahinch, opened with a two-under-par 73 before adding a five-under 68 in the afternoon for a  one-shot lead on seven-under par from Exeter's Emily Toy.

Lahinch and Stirling's Sinead Sexton, the winner of the Scottish Students' title at Moray Golf Club's Old Course last week, is just four behind Ryan in a share of third with Maynooth's Molly Dowling alone in fifth.

The final round of both the men's and women's events will be played over the Old Course.

R&A Foundation Scholars Tournament 2017

The Eden & The Old Course, St Andrews

Men

1 MURPHY, John (Maynooth) -8 F -6 68 64 132
T3 GREHAN, Stuart (Maynooth) -5 F -2 67 68 135
5 DAWSON, Robin (Maynooth) -3 F Par 67 70 137
T6 LE BLANC, Kevin (Maynooth) -2 F +1 67 71 138
T14 YATES, Jonathan (UCD) -1 F +5 64 75 139
T14 WOODROOFE, Colin (Maynooth) +1 F+2 69 72 141
T19 RUSSELL, William (Ulster) +2 F +2 70 72 142
T19 SMITH, Eugene (Maynooth) +2 F +5 67 75 142
T25 MCCARRON, Kyle (Maynooth) +4 F+5 69 75 144
T29 KERR, Peter St Andrews +5 F Par 75 70 145
T29 MULLARNEY, Ronan (Maynooth) +5 F +3 72 73 145
T37 GRIFFIN, Eanna (Maynooth) +8 F +5 73 75 148
T37 FITZMAURICE, Gavin (UCD) +8 F +6 72 76 148
T39 COLLINS, Ted (UCD) +5 F +1 74 71 145
T40 BUTLER, Cathal (Maynooth) +9 F +2 77 72 149
42 NOLAN, Cathal NUI Galway +10 F+7 73 77 150
T44 FLANAGAN, Sean (Maynooth) +6 F +1 75 71 146
T47 GREHAN, Liam (Maynooth) +8 F +2 76 72 148
T50 MCDONNELL, Jack (Maynooth) +9 F +7 72 77 149
 

Women

1 RYAN, Chloe (UCD) -7 F -5 71 68 139
T3 SEXTON, Sinead (Stirling) -3 F-2 72 71 143
5 DOWLING, Molly (Maynooth) -2 F -1 72 72 144
12 BURKE, Shannon (Maynooth) +12 F +9 76 82 158
13 DOYLE, Mary (Maynooth) +13 F +4 82 77 159