Jeev recovers well to finish sixth in Japan

May 4th, 2008 - 7:17 pm ICT by admin  

Togo (Japan), May 4 (IANS) Jeev Milkha Singh dropped four bogeys but still managed to finish tied sixth at the Chunichi Crowns tournament here Sunday. Jeev, who was playing his first event in Japan in 2008, carded a final round of one-under 69. He opened with two bogeys and then dropped two more on the back nine. But in between he slotted five birdies to stay under par for the third time in four rounds.

“I was inconsistent with my putting. A three-putt at the second and a few other misses were the reason for my tied-sixth finish,” said Jeev, who needed 26 putts for the round.

“I did putt well in stages. On the back nine I had seven single putts, which means I was not getting to the greens in regulation often enough,” he added.

Tomohiro Kondo won the title when he birdied the second playoff hole to beat Hiroyuki Fujita. It was Kondo’s fourth career title in Japan.

Jeev had back-to-back bogeys on first and second but birdies on fifth and eighth put him back at even par. He birdied 10th, 12th and 15th but dropped shots on 13th and 17th to spoil his chances for a better finish.

Jeev’s sixth place should see him rise a few notches on the world golf ranking this coming week.Kondo drained a 17-footer in the decisive extra hole to seal his first win in nearly a year after adding a 67 to a third-round 64.

Fujita, a five-time winner on the tour, got into the play-off when he birdied the 18th to match Kondo with a 67 and reached nine-under 271 in the regulation 72 holes. He settled for par on both the playoff holes which were played on the par-4 18th.

Kondo trailed overnight leader Ryoken Kawagishi by two shots at the start of the final round and quickly closed the gap with back-to-back birdies from the opening hole.

Kawagishi (71) faded away with three bogeys in the first four holes. He ended fourth with fellow Japanese Toru Suzuki (68) on 273. Australia’s Steven Conran (68) and Jeev (69) followed at another stroke behind.

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