Tokyo Olympics: Lydia Ko produces stunning third round to move into golf medal contention

Lydia Ko has rocketed into medal contention at the Tokyo Olympics' golf tournament, with a stunning third round at Kasumigaseki Country Club.

Beginning the day in ninth position on the leaderboard, Ko carded a blemish-free round to end her third day with a course best five-under 66 at the time of finishing. 

That sees the Kiwi at 10-under after three rounds, in a tie for third a short time after the end of her round.

Opening her third round with four pars, Ko birdied the fifth hole as part of a blemish-free front nine, before rocketing up the leaderboard on the back nine.

The Rio de Janeiro silver medallist birdied the 10th hole, and added two more on the 12th and 13th holes to move to nine-under for the tournament - one shot back from the medal positions.

Ko made even par from 14 through 16, before another birdie on the 17th took her to five-under for her round and 10-under overall, where she'd finish with one last par on the 18th.

As she finished her third round, Ko trailed leader Nelly Korda by five shots, and was one shot back of India's Aditi Ashok, at 12-under.

Unlikely to catch Korda, the best result for Ko would be to win silver, equalling her achievement of the Rio Olympic Games back in 2016.

Ko will start her final round in a four-way tie for third place, alongside Japan's Mone Inami, Denmark's Emily Kristine Pedersen and Australia's Hannah Green.

The only potential threat to Ko's hopes of playing for a medal though could be the weather, with organisers cautious over a potential storm that would wipe away any hope of a fourth and final round. 

However, organisers have outlined that the fourth round will be postponed to Sunday if required.

New Zealand has already won 19 medals from the Tokyo Olympics, so far taking home seven gold, six silver and six bronze, bettering the return of 18 from Rio 2016.