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Aditya assumes sole lead

August 19, 2004 17:31 IST

Youth stole a march over experience as Aditya Singh, egged on by a piece of valuable advice from his father leapfrogged to a four-stroke lead going into the final round of the Royal Challenge South, being played at the par-70, Bangalore Golf Club.

Aditya, in his rookie season on the Royal Challenge Indian Golf Tour, shot a one-under 69 to tally one-under 209 for the tournament.

Joint overnight leader Ambala's Manav Das, who slipped from his pedestal with a round of 73, was joined in second place by first round leader, Meerut-based Amardip Sinh Malik at three-over 213. 

Delhi's Manav Jaini was placed fourth at four over 214.

Chetan Singh follows his son's progress with an eagle's eye. Just prior to his leaving to do battle in the third round of the Royal Challenge South, Aditya received a call from his father. It was a short, crisp conversation, where the senior Singh instructed his son to play his natural game but within himself. The message was clear: play safe and don't get too ambitious. Aditya followed the advice to a tee and the rewards were encouraging to say the least.

The 17-y-ear-old did not have too encouraging a start to his round, as his tee shot planted itself on the cart path next to the net nestling the Out of Bounds fence on the right. Aditya chipped out and went on to drop a shot on that hole. A birdie on the second was followed by another bogey on the third.

"At this stage, I thought back to what my father said and decided to play percentage golf," said the youngster. 

Opportunity presented itself in form of a birdie on the fifth.

"The 15 feet putt I sank on that hole brought the tempo back and from then on it was smooth sailing," said the youngster. 

Aditya then went on to birdie the eighth and tenth. A lone bogey on the 15th, where he missed a three feet putt was followed by a four feet missed birdie opportunity on the following hole. By this time thoug, there was sufficient work done to ensure a healthy lead for Aditya Singh.

Amardip Malik didn't have a very happy front nine. The 19-year-old dropped shots on the second, fourth, seventh and ninth, with a lone birdie on the eight adding some consolation. On the back-nine, however, Malik dropped a shot on the 14th, but in typical fashion to his earlier two rounds, staged a late recovery with birdies on the 16th and 18th, for a card of two over 72.

Manav Das too had early hiccups in the form of a double bogey on the fourth. Another bogey on the seventh placed him at three over on the tenth tee-box. On his back-nine, dropped shots on the 13th and 16th were sandwiched by birdies on the 14th and 15th. 

Das is a come-back artist and his oodles of experience will however ensure that the other contenders are kept on their toes. 

Overall, there is some very competitive golf in the offing on Friday, something Bangaloreans are advised to personally witness for the sheer thrill of quality competitive golf and plenty of Royal Challenge moments.

SCORES (after 54 holes): 209 Aditya Singh(69,71,69); 213 Amardip Sinh Malik(67,74,72), Manav Das(68,72,73); 214 Manav Jaini(70,75,69); 215 Gagan Verma(73,71,71), Karanjit Singh(75,69,71), AS Lehal(72,71,72); 216 Joseph Chakola(71,72,73); 217 Simarjeet Singh(71,74,72); 218 Jaideep Patwardhan(71,74,73), Gaganjeet Bhullar(74,70,74).


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