PARIS, April 4 (Xinhua) -- A survey released on Tuesday suggested independent presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron and leader of the far-right National Front party Marine Le Pen were neck-and-neck in the first round of French presidential race.
A poll for the daily Le Monde showed the pro-liberal market Macron and nationalism advocate Le Pen tied at 25 percent of voting intentions on April 23.
Conservative contender Francois Fillon, struggling to regain steam after his wife's alleged fake job scandal, was seen at third place with 17.5 percent unchanged from March survey. Far-left nominee Jean-Luc Melenchon was predicted to garner 15 percent, up by 3.5 percentage points.
For the decisive round in May 7, Macron would beat Le Pen by 61 percent to 39 percent, according to the survey.
With three weeks to go for the presidential election, 64 percent of 14,300 people interviewed said they were certain of their decision, up by 5 percentage points from last survey, with Le Pen supporters most sure of their choice.
Eleven candidates are competing for the presidency. They are due to face-off in a televised debate on Tuesday evening.