Muniyappa in lead at Crompton Greaves OpenNovember 25th, 2009 - 10:30 pm ICT by IANS
Mumbai, Nov 25 (IANS) Bangalore’s Chinnaswamy Muniyappa, the reigning Indian Open champion, shared the joint lead along with Kolkata’s Raju Ali Mollah, Jaipur’s Vishal Singh and Shaquill Shane of the US after round one of the Crompton Greaves Open 2009 (an Aircel-PGTI event), here Wednesday.
Muniyappa, Mollah, Singh and Shane produced identical scores of four under 49 to be the joint leaders on day one. Manav Jaini, Sandeep Syal, Praduman Singh Guleria and Feroz Ali Mollah are one stroke off the pace in tied fifth place.
The course at the Willingdon Sports Club is undergoing renovation and being re-turfed. As a result of this, holes 7, 8 and 9 will not be in play for the first two rounds and 15 holes will constitute one stipulated round. The par for the course in round one and two is 53.
Muniyappa began his round with a bogey on the first but then rallied with birdies on the fourth and fifth. The highlight of his round was the hole-in-one on the 147-yard sixth hole. He used a nine-iron on the sixth tee.
The reigning Indian Open champion made a 16 feet putt from the edge of the green to birdie the 10th. Muniyappa went on to drop a bogey on the 11th as his tee shot found the water. The 32-year-old closed with a birdie on the 18th, where he hit his tee shot (sand wedge) to within three feet of the hole.”
Muniyappa said: “I hit it really well today and drove the green on one of the par four holes. However, my putting was quite average. The hole-in-one on the sixth was very special. It was the third hole-in-one of my professional career. I realized the ball had rolled in only when I walked up to the green.”
He added: “One needs to be extremely smart on this course. You cannot attack the pins all the time since there are a lot of par three holes and the rough is up. It is not easy to recover if you miss the fairway. The course is quite challenging as the birdies are hard to come by on the par 3s. Good course management is the key on this course.”
Mollah dropped a bogey on the second as a result of finding the bunker. He then found the bunker on the fourth and fifth as well but recovered with some excellent chip shots to birdie those two holes. He had three successive birdies on the 15th, 16th and 17th and thus closed his opening round in style. He drove the green on the par four 15th and sank a 25-footer on the 16th.
Vishal Singh and Shaquill Shane also shot scores of four under 49 to join Muniyappa and Mollah as the joint leaders. While Vishal sank five birdies, including four on the trot from the second through the fifth and dropped a lone bogey, Shaquill made seven birdies, a bogey and a double bogey.
Manav Jaini, Sandeep Syal, Praduman Singh Guleria and Feroz Ali Mollah are in tied fifth place at three under 50. Mukesh Kumar is tied ninth at two under 51. Anirban Lahiri, the current Aircel-PGTI Order of Merit leader, shot four over 57 to be tied 86th.
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Tags: aircel, birdie, birdies, bogey, course management, feroz, four holes, hole in one, manav, mollah, open champion, raju, sand wedge, sixth hole, sports club, syal, third hole, three feet, vishal singh, willingdon