Minjee Lee is setting her sights on winning the US Women's Open after moving three shots in front at the top of the leaderboard ©Getty Images

Minjee Lee of Australia has established a three-shot lead heading into the final day of the US Women’s Open at Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club.

The world number four started the third round tied with California’s Mina Harigae at the top of the leaderboard but has now moved ahead of the American after notching a four-under 67 at the North Carolinian course.

The Australian’s score of 13 under after 54 holes is also a record for the US Women’s Open, beating American Juli Inkster’s previous best mark of 201 set in 1999 by one shot.

After a quiet opening eight holes, Lee then reeled off four consecutive birdies, starting with 11-footers at holes nine and ten.

At the par-four 11th, Lee put her approach to seven feet and rolled in the birdie before capping the streak with a 12-footer at the next hole.

"When I was on the run of birdies, I wasn't too nervous," said Lee.

"I think coming down the stretch a little bit more, just with more people maybe, just a little bit more pressure.

"I'm pretty calm.

"My personality is pretty calm anyway.

"I don't think I get too high or too low. I think that's a strength of mine."

Mina Harigae remains in the hunt for the title despite slipping three shots behind Minjee Lee ©Getty Images
Mina Harigae remains in the hunt for the title despite slipping three shots behind Minjee Lee ©Getty Images

Lee is now set to battle it out with Harigae who will be keen to bounce back after slipping behind her rival.

The American was one stroke clear of Lee at the halfway stage on 11 under.

But back-to-back bogeys at 11 and 12, combined with Lee’s stunning birdie streak, saw Harigae drop to second, three shots off the leader.

"I was a little nervous in the beginning, but I was able to hit some good shots," said Harigae.

"Hit (some) little squirrelly shots, but then I made a good birdie on 16.

"I think overall I'm just happy with the way I was able to hang in there."

Bronte Law of England surged into solo third at seven under, six shots behind Lee and three short of Harigae.

New Zealand’s Lydia Ko shot the round of the day with a five-under 66 and is now one of seven players tied for fourth at six under.

Competition is due to conclude tomorrow.