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Delhi’s Khan produces error-free 7-under 65 to be placed third
Updated At: Nov 12, 2021 07:53 AM (IST)
Golfer Pukhraj Singh in action at the Chandigarh Golf Club on Thursday. TRIBUNE PHOTO: NITIN MITTAL
Chandigarh, November 11
Six-time international winner Shiv Kapur and local lad Abhijit Singh Chadha got off to flying starts with splendid rounds of 8-under 64 to share the first round lead at the Jeev Milkha Singh Invitational 2021, by TAKE Sports, at the Chandigarh Golf Club today.
While Dubai-based Kapur had a bogey-free day, two-time PGTI winner Chadha, playing at his home course, fired an eagle, seven birdies and a bogey. Delhi’s Rashid Khan produced an impressive error-free 7-under 65 to be placed third.
The 39-year-old Kapur, who has had a few starts on the European Tour this year, picked up his first birdie of the day on the fifth hole and didn’t look back thereafter as he collected seven more birdies, including two on the 16th and 17th.
Interestingly, he had enjoyed a similar start at the 2018 edition of the event when he had shot a first round of 65 to be the joint leader. “I was solid all the way round. I didn’t birdie two of the short par-5s and left a couple of putts out there, but overall it was a clean card with no bogeys. I had my fair share of putts. I hit lots of fairways and all 18 greens in regulation. However, it’s a long way to go and I will try and build from here,” said Kapur.
He further said, “Jeev is like an older brother to me. So, I always try my best to play this event. The event means a lot to Jeev after passing of his parents earlier this year.”
The 30-year-old Abhijit Singh Chadha, who began his round from the 10th tee on Thursday, recorded a 64 courtesy his hot putter. After sinking his first birdie on the 13th, the tall and lanky Chadha added an eagle, six more birdies and a bogey to his card. He sank a 45-footer on the fifth and a 30-feet putt on the seventh. “The two 30-feet plus putts were the highlight of the round. It’s been a slow season for me, but I’ve worked a lot on my putting and things are coming together now. Playing in home conditions also always helps,” said Chadha.
Chandigarh’s Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, the seasoned Gaurav Ghei of Delhi, Kshitij Naveed Kaul, another Delhi-based player and Gurugram’s Tapy Ghai were all in tied fourth having shot scores of 67. Aadil Bedi was the third Chandigarh player in the top-10 as he struck a 68 to be tied eighth.
Among the marquee names in the field, Jyoti Randhawa, SSP Chawrasia, Udayan Mane and former champion Ajeetesh Sandhu of Chandigarh carded 69s to be tied 12th while Gaganjeet Bhullar and former champion Chikkarangappa were a further shot back in tied 26th place.
Chandigarh’s Karandeep Kochhar, the defending champion and the PGTI Order of Merit leader, shot a 72 to be tied 50th. Tournament host Jeev Milkha Singh, who had good friends and fellow Chandigarh professionals Amritinder Singh and Gurbaaz Mann as his playing partners, returned a 75 to be placed tied 89th.
“I was surprised that I turned at even-par despite being so rusty. I managed myself well off the tee and kept it in play. On the front-nine I made three bogeys from the centre of the fairway so that was a little disappointing and just showed that my iron-play was patchy today. I’m looking forward to a better second round,” said Jeev. — TNS
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