Superb start for Shubhankar, lying fifth in Dutch Open; Gandas 44th
Shubhankar Sharma shrugged off his recent disappointments with a stunning 5-under 67 in the first round of the KLM Dutch Open, placing him inside the top-5 at the DP World Tour event.
Sharma’s round of 67 was his best in relation to par since his opening round of the year, when he shot a similar 67 at the HSBC Abu Dhabi Championship where he finished tied-seventh.
In the first round of the Dutch Open, where he was T-14 a year ago, Sharma had five birdies, an eagle hole out from the bunker and two bogeys.
India’s other player in the field, Manu Gandas (71) was T-44 with four birdies against one bogey and one double bogey.
Sharma was four behind Spaniard Jorge Campillo who posted a brilliant nine-under opening round of 63 to take a three-stroke lead. The Spaniard, who won his third DP World Tour title at the Magical Kenya Open, made the most of calm morning conditions to race into the lead at Bernardus Golf.
Senior PGA Championship: Modest start for Atwal as Harrington leads with 64
Arjun Atwal, playing his first senior Major and only his second event on the Champions Tour, got off to a modest start at one-over 73, which gave him a good chance of making the weekend cut at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship.
Atwal, the only Indian to have won on the PGA Tour, was tied for 54th, but Jeev Milkha Singh, playing his third Senior Major, had a rough day as he shot 4-over 76 and was tied-113th. He will need a solid second round to make the cut.
Ireland’s Padraig Harrington, a three-time Major winner, got off to a hot start with an 8-under 64 for a two-shot lead. The 51-year-old Irishman made the cut at Oak Hill at the PGA last week.
Atwal, who started on the back nine, birdied the 12th but gave that gain away on the 13th. A birdie on Par-5 18th saw him turn in one-under. His next holes were action-packed as he did not have a single par.
He birdied third, fourth and eighth and bogeyed first, second, fifth, sixth and seventh and closed with a par on the ninth. At 1-over he is on the cut line.
Jeev birdied first and seventh and bogeyed third and fourth to turn in even par. On the back nine, he had four bogeys and no birdies.
Chasing Harrington was Senior PGA debutant Japan’s Katsumasa Miyamoto, who shot 66 with seven birdies and one bogey and he was second.
Brazilian Adilson da Silva had a 67 on his Senior PGA debut as did Phillip Price at PGA Frisco’s Fields Ranch East course.
Stewart Cink, who turned 50 less than a week ago, carded 68 and was alongside Miguel Angel Jimenez, Robert Karlsson, Thomas Bjorn, Alex Cejka, Charlie Wi and Richard Green in Tied-fifth.
Steve Stricker, who won the season’s first PGA TOUR Champions major two weeks ago with his second consecutive Regions Tradition title, and defending champion Steven Alker shot 70. Justin Leonard, seeking his first PGA TOUR Champions title, shot 71.
Harrington was bogey-free and had four birdies on either side of the course as he played with Rocco Mediate (69).
Harrington won four times in his PGA Tour Champions debut season last year, including the U.S. Senior Open and the season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship. He has four top 10s in five starts this season.
There were two aces. The first came from Dave McNabb (78) on the 161-yard eighth hole, and Corey Pavin (71) had one at the 183-yard fourth.
Aditi wins her 2nd match, stays in hunt for knockout berth in LPGA matchplay
India’s Aditi Ashok recovered from the opening day reversal to claim a win over USA’s Caroline Inglis in the second match and stay in the hunt for a spot in the knockout stage of LPGA Match-Play.
Aditi, who lost her first match on the 18th hole, won her second match against Inglis as she held off the American to win 1-up.
The 25-year-old from Bengaluru has now won one match and lost one as have the other three players in the group.
The hugely talented Jennifer Kupcho, who opened with a loss to Inglis, beat Perrine Delacour, who had beaten Aditi 1-up in the first set of matches. Kupcho won 2&1.
Aditi meets Kupcho, and Inglis meets Delacour in the last set of matches in Group 10 of the 64-player tournament.
The 64 players have been divided into 16 groups and the winner of each will move to the knockout stage to be played over the weekend.
Coming off two Top-5 finishes on the LPGA including a loss in the play-off in the JM Eagle championship, Aditi won her fourth title on the Ladies European earlier this season and leads the LET Order of Merit.
Aditi won the third hole but lost the fourth and again won the seventh but lost the ninth as she and Inglis were tied at the turn.
The Indian won the 11th only to see Inglis tie again on the 14th. A par on the 15th and a birdie on par-5 16th put Aditi 2-up with two to go. Inglis fought back again to win the 17th but they parred the Par-5 18th as the Indian won the match.
Switzerland’s Albane Valenzuela defeated top-seeded American Lilia Vu 2-up as the fight for round-of-16 berths became intense.
Valenzuela improved to 2-0 with her win over Vu, the highest-ranked player in the field at fourth in the world and winner of her first major title at the Chevron Championship last month.
China’s Lin Xiyu, the highest-ranked player in her group, suffered a second straight defeat with her 3&2 loss to Thailand’s Pajaree Anannarukarn.
Defending champion Ji Eun-hee, who had opened with a victory on Wednesday, lost to Canadian Maddie Szeryk 3&2.
Valenzuela was among 10 players to improve to 2-0, a group that also included American Ally Ewing — winner of the inaugural edition in 2021 — and 2022 runner-up Ayaka Furue of Japan.
Three-time major winner Anna Nordqvist of Sweden notched her second-straight win, leading 4-up before holding on for a 1-up win over Lauren Coughlin. Sweden’s Maja Stark also won her second-straight match, downing Liu Yu of China 2&1.
Leave a Reply