First round leader, Liam Higgins, eagled the last to share the lead going into the final round of the Lawrence Batley Seniors at Huddersfield GC.
The big-hitting Irishman went out in three-over par 39 but came back in three-under par 33 to record a level par 71. He is tied alongside South Africa’s John Fourie and America’s David Oakley who went round in 70 and 71 respectively.
The round of the day came from England’s Neil Coles who defied the windy conditions to produce a two-under par 69.
Coles, 65, winner of the recent Microlease Jersey Seniors Open, the 45th victory of his outstanding career, trails Fourie, Oakley and Higgins by just one shot after a faultless round that included 16 pars and two birdies at the 375-yard 7th and the 487-yard 18th.
The Englishman is one shot ahead of Scotland’s David Huish, the Director of Golf at North Berwick, who returned a 72, and two shots in front of Northern Ireland’s David Jones who is on 144 after a second round of 73.
One stroke behind that, defending champion, Northern Ireland’s, Eddie Polland produced a battling 74 to share seventh place alongside a cosmopolitan group comprising England’s Jim Rhodes, Italy’s Alberto Croce, and Australia’s Terry Gale.
Further down the leaderboard, Australia’s Noel Ratcliffe returned a 79 that included a hole-in-one on the 215-yard 13th hole. He would have won a £14,000 Rover 45 had he achieved that feat on the 161-yard 8th hole.
Ratcliffe, a two-time European Seniors Tour winner, who also won the 1987 Benson & Hedges International Open, used a 6-iron for the shot.
Moments later, Brian Waites also created a stir, holing a 233-yard 3-iron for an albatross two on the 491-yard par-5 14th hole. It was the first albatross of the Englishman’s long and illustrious career and helped him to post a 73 for a six-over par aggregate of 148.