Jeev leads, Chowrasia seventh at Irish Open golf

May 16th, 2008 - 4:57 pm ICT by admin  

Adare Manor (Ireland), May 16 (IANS) Indian duo Jeev Milkha Singh and S.S.P. Chowrasia had brilliant starts to their European campaign as they both had bogey-free rounds on the first day of the Irish Open golf tournament. Riding an eagle and four birdies, Jeev carded a six-under 66 to take a share of the lead, while Chowrasia shot a three-under 69 with three birdies to finish the first round tied for seventh here Thursday.

Shiv Kapur had a modest even par 72 in tied 30th, while Jyoti Randhawa’s 76 was tied 95th.

Jeev, who started on the tenth, had birdies on 15th and 16th to turn in two-under and added two more on first and fifth. A superb eagle on the seventh was followed by a stunning par save on the ninth, his closing hole, as Jeev got a share of the lead with Australia’s Richard Green at the Adare Manor Hotel and Golf Resorts.

Playing at six under par when he reached the last hole, Jeev smashed his third shot approach into the ninth into the greenside bushes. He called for a referee and then after removing some television cables and taking an awkward stance in the bushes, almost holed his chip, missing the pin by millimetres. But the ball skidded 40 feet past the cup. Jeev, however, holed the superb 40-footer for par.

“When I saw the ball, I knew the first thing is to go to the referee and make sure that I could take a stance without breaking any rules because there was a chance of being penalised,” said Jeev.

“I was just trying to chip it out from there and it came out perfect. Missed the hole and went to about 40 feet away; I was happy with that. I said okay, I know I can make a six, but when I rolled that putt, I know it looked pretty good, like it was going in, and it did. And that’s the story of the day really - I made a lot of great up and downs today.”

Jeev used just 24 putts on a great day when the course played tough but the Indian made few mistakes.

Chowrasia, who has decided to concentrate more on the European Tour, and is playing his first event after gaining full membership following his win in February, birdied three times between sixth and 11th and parred the rest for a superb 69. “It felt good to come back without a bogey and I hope I can carry on from here,” he said.

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