Last night New Zealander Michael Long produced a sensational eagle putt to put himself in striking distance of the Oates Vic Open.
However he is not the only one in reach of becoming the first International to take out the men’s title since 2004 (when current competitor Gareth Paddison won).
American Ryan Carter continued his rise up the leaderboard since Friday when he initially drew level with Long after the Californian captured four impressive birdies during the second round.
After sneaking into the top ten on Friday the 32-year-old has now slipped back out to equal 13th due to two bogeys bringing him to a score of 6-under-par entering this morning.
“Coming into the week I wasn’t playing very well so I worked on a few things but I ended up putting well yesterday which I hadn’t done in a while,” said Carter.
He added, “Thursday was really tough but then the wind wasn’t blowing as bad on Friday and prior to the last hole I was bogey free so I was there was no three-putts then.”
Though Carter failed to make the cut during Australian PGA Championship at the RACV Royal Pines he assured Golf Victoria that he still had admiration for the country.
“I love Australia, the golf courses are second to none; simply the best place to play golf,” said Carter.
“Hopefully I can play well this weekend and maybe get into Perth and go from there.”
If successful this weekend Carter would also be the first American since fellow Californian Patrick Burke captured the 1994 title at the Victoria Golf Club.
“I’m actually surprised that not a lot of guys from the US play down here but I suppose it’s a long trip,” said Carter.
Since the tournament was moved to the 13th Beach Golf Links in 2013 only reigning champion Marianne Skarpnord (Norway) has been able to take out the International bragging rights.
“I’ve never seen this concept in the (United) States so it’s interesting but kind of nice,” said Carter.
“I assumed during the week that the men and women would be alternating courses but it’s kind of nice and it’s great for the fans; especially with the field we have for the women this year.”
Carter will tee off alongside Bendigo’s Lucas Herbert and Jarryd Felton at 10.15am.