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Bangalore boys hog limelight
September 28, 2005 17:16 IST
Bangalore boys S Madaiah and C Muniyappa, the hard-working professionals from the Karnataka Golf Association, along with Ashok Kumar of Delhi, shared the opening day's lead in the Rs 10-lakh Hyundai-MGC Open, the fourth and final leg of the Amby Valley PGAI Tour 2005-06 season, being played at the MGC Golf Links, in Chennai on Wednesday.
The trio submitted a card of five-under 65 on a day when as many as 34 par or sub-par scored were recorded for the day.
Vishal Singh of Jaipur and Kolkatan Nabin Mondal were tied for the fourth place at four-under 66 while four players -- SSP Chowrasia, Feroz Ali (both Kolkata), Ranjit Singh (Chandigarh) and Waheed Balouch of Pakistan shared the sixth place.
As many as seven players -- Bhoop Singh, D Patel, Matloob Rana, Pappan, Sanjay Kumar, Sheeraz Kalra and Vinod Kumar were in the 10th spot.
Amby Valley PGAI Tour Order of Merit leader Mukesh Kumar shot a one-over 71 to be tied for the 35th spot.
S Madaiah, who is looking for his first win on the Amby Valley PGAI Tour, began with a sandy birdie on the opening hole, chipping-in from the right bunker. After a bogey on the third he made two more birdies on the fifth and on the ninth, the latter with a superb approach shot. He began his back nine with a brilliant birdie where he chipped to two feet. A long drive, left him with a 9-iron approach on the par-5 495-yard 12th, from where he sank a 20-footer for an eagle. The 24-year-old almost made one more eagle on the par-5, 14th and settled for a birdie. After being six-under, the lean pro three-putted from 15 feet on the 16th for a bogey. "The greens are small and hence the approach shots have to be accurate," said Madaiah. "Although I missed many greens, my putting was much better than the previous tournament," he said after hitting 10 greens-in-regulation and making 22 putts for the day.
Muniyappa had a similar tale as he made three birdies on the front nine -- first, sixth and ninth. Successive birdies on the 11th and 12th, he was five under for the day. His approach shot landed in the adjoining sand track. The 26-year-old then made a good up and down from there for another birdie. However, he could not enact the same on the finishing hole when he had to make chip-putt from the bunker and incurred a bogey.
"But for the bogey on the finishing hole, I had everything else right today," said Muniyappa.
Meanwhile Ashok Kumar, known for his attacking game, surprisingly adopted a cautious approach. Beginning from the 10th tee, he saved a stroke on the opening hole. With a driver-5 iron approach shot, he was in two on the par-5 12th and drained the 20-footer for an eagle. The 24-year-old made another birdie on the 15th, thanks to a good short game. After having to wait for a while on the first for the cross-over, Ashok opened by saving a stroke, only to lose it on the par-3 second. After paring his way, his last birdie of the day came on the par-4 eighth, where he sank a 15-footer.
Top scores (after 18 holes) Pros: 65 Ashok Kumar (Del), C Muniyappa, S Madaiah (both Bangalore); 66 Nabin Mondal (Kol), Vishal Singh (Jaipur); 67 Feroz Ali (Kol), Ranjit Singh (Chd), SSP Chowrasia (Kol), Waheed Balouch (Pak); 68 D Patel (Mhow), Matloob Rana (Pak), Pappan (Del), Bhoop Singh, Sanjay Kumar, Sheeraz Kalra (all Lucknow), Vinod Kumar (Del). Amateurs: 73 S Jayanan; 74 V Darshan (both Chen).