Ireland's Leona Maguire, right, leads the way at the halfway stage in New Jersey ©Getty Images

Ireland's Leona Maguire produced a brilliant late surge to take the lead at the halfway stage of the Women’s PGA Championship at Baltusrol Golf Club.

Maguire birdied four of the final six holes to card a three-under-par 68 in the second round in New Jersey.

Her late flurry of birdies saw her take a one-short lead on five under in the tournament as the Irishwoman sets her sights on her first major title.

"This is uncharted territory for me," said the 28-year-old whose previous best performance at a major was a fourth-place finish at the 2022 Women’s British Open.

"Whatever happens this week, I'm sure I'll learn a lot, and just sort of taking it one day at a time.

"I think this golf course demands that.

"I think you can't think more than one shot ahead, let alone a hole or a round ahead."

There are three players just one shot behind Maguire with Lin Xiyu of China, Mel Reid of England and Celine Borge of Norway all tied second on four under.

"I feel like I've been playing good but I haven't had one week that I do like crazy stuff," said Lin.

"I would say being in contention, it's something I expect to see myself to do, so it's nothing really surprised me.

"But I do know I probably have another gear in me that haven't really shown yet."

Lee-Anne Pace of South Africa was the first-round leader but she dropped off the pace, slipping to fifth after posting a round of 73 to put her on three under.

She is tied with Australia’s Minjee Lee who has put herself in contention with two rounds to go as she bids for a third major crown.

American duo Nelly Korda and Lilia Vu and Thailand’s Atthaya Thitikul, who are all ranked inside the world’s top six, were among those that failed to make the cut.