Incheon: World No.7 Minjee Lee remained firmly in contention as South Korea's Choi Hye-Jin snatched the outright lead at the halfway stage of the Hana Financial Group Championship on Friday.
Australia's Lee, in her fourth appearance at the tournament, carded a two-under-par 70 at the Bear's Best Cheongna Golf Club for a total of three-under 141.
The major winner was three shots behind Choi, who led by a single shot in a congested leaderboard where only six shots separate the top 43 players.
Lee, who was tied 19th overnight, carded three birdies against a lone bogey to end the second day four rungs higher in tied 15th place.
A host of home competitors -- Lee Ye-Won, Lin Ju-Yeon, Ma Da-Som, Park Hyung-Kyung, Lee So-Young, and Shin Sil-Bang -- were in a six-way tie for second on 139.
Thai pair Jaravee Boonchant and Patty Tavatanakit had contrasting fortunes as they sat in a seven-way tie for eighth, two shots off the pace.
While Jaravee fired the best of the day's 67, highlighted by an eagle at the par-four 13th, Patty could only muster a 72.
"I played very well today. I played well yesterday too, but I think the main difference between how I shot yesterday and today was the mental game," said Jaravee, last year's Epson Tour Championship winner.
"Like yesterday, I was a bit worried about the distance, the course, the wind, and everything. So I don't think my mind was really focused, but today, having a caddie on the bag helped me a lot.
"I was trying to just focus on shot by shot, and just play my own game, and I think that's helped me focus more."