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Rediff.com  » Sports » Digvijay leads Indian challenge at Philippines Open

Digvijay leads Indian challenge at Philippines Open

February 02, 2007 18:07 IST

Digvijay Singh kept the Indian challenge going at the US $300,000 Philippines Open, leading four Indians into the weekend action at the Wack Wack Golf and Country Club.

Digvijay, who is still looking for his maiden win on the Asian Tour, shot three birdies and as many bogeys to card an even par 72 that pegged him at tied seventh at three-under 141.

He was four behind midway leader Liang Wen-Chong of China (69), who took another step towards his maiden title.

One shot behind Liang is 27-year-old Australian rookie Nevin Basic, who finished fifth at the Asian Tour qualifying school this year. He shot five-under 67 with seven birdies and two bogeys to be at six-under.

Liang started on the 10th and had an eventful front nine. He carded six birdies, one bogey and a double bogey to go with just one par.

The Chinese player birdied the 10th and 11th and then double bogeyed the 12th. But he birdied the next four and found his first par of the day on the 17th.

He then bogeyed the 18th to turn in three-under 33. On his second nine, he birdied two and bogeyed two for 36 to finish with 69.

Only four of the nine Indians in the field made the cut. Apart from Digvijay, Uttam Singh Mundy (70) and Gurbaaz Mann (75), both at one-over and tied 36th, and Arjun Singh (75) at 65th place and right on cut line at five-over, made it to the weekend.

In sole third was 40-year-old Filipino veteran Benjie Magada (71-68) who has seven domestic titles, but none at the Asian level. He was at five-under and in tied fourth was another Filipino veteran, Frankie Minoza, who has tasted success on Japan Tour.

Minoza (67) shared fourth place with Jarrod Moseley (71) and Jason Knutzon (72) at four-under.

Digvijay, Clay Devers (70), Rick Gibson (70) and Adam Blyth (67) were all at three-under.    Digvijay, seventh overnight after first day, dropped a bogey right at the finish to come back with an even par 72 on the second day and was three-under. He stayed in seventh place after 36 holes, where he was after yesterday's round.

He shot a 69 in first round, had two bogeys and one birdie on his first nine holes after starting on the 10th. But back-to-back birdies on third and fourth brought him under par. Then a bogey on his closing hole pulled him back.

Uttam Singh Mundy bounced back from his 75 on first day as he shot a 70. He had two birdies on either side of the turn, and two bogeys, both on the front nine as he returned a card of 70 and is now one-over for two days.

Gurbaaz Mann made a small recovery on the back nine after a disastrous start. He opened with a triple bogey on 10th and a bogey on 11th. He had another bogey on 18th to turn in five-over. But two birdies on third and eighth improved his position and he ended at 75 to be one-over for the tournament. He slipped from overnight 12th to 36th.

Leading second round scores

137 - Liang Wen-chong (CHN) 68-69

138 - Neven Basic (AUS) 71-67

139 - Benjie Magada (PHI) 71-68

140 - Jarrod Moseley (AUS) 69-71, Frankie Minoza (PHI) 73-67, Jason Knutzon (USA) 68-72

141 - Clay Devers (USA) 71-70, Rick Gibson (CAN) 71-70, Digvijay Singh (IND) 69-72, Adam Blyth (AUS) 74-67

142 - Han Lee (KOR) 70-72, Anthony Kang (USA) 68-74, Lu Wei-chih (TPE) 71-71, David Bransdon (AUS) 69-73, Jay Bayron [A] (PHI) 68-74

143 - Cookie Lao (PHI) 73-70, Sung Mao-chang (TPE) 71-72, Rowan Beste (AUS) 72-71, Wang Ter-chang (TPE) 68-75, Antonio Asistio Ii [A] (PHI) 75-68, Gerald Rosales (PHI) 73-70, Carito Villaroman (PHI) 68-75, Kim Hye-dong (KOR) 73-70, Artemio Murakami (PHI) 71-72, Prayad Marksaeng (THA) 69-74, Park Jun-won (KOR) 69-74.