Lahiri fires 62 to take lead at Eagleburg Open

Bangalore, July 3 (IANS) Local favourite Anirban Lahiri, after enduring a poor first round, bounced back with a vengeance with an awesome 10-under-62 to seize the lead in the PGTI Eagleburg Open at the Eagleton Golf Resort near here Wednesday.

Lahiri's two-day total stood at nine-under-135 following his one-over 73 in the first round. Lucknow's Sanjay Kumar fired a five-under-67 to be placed second at eight-under-136.

Lahiri (73-62) was off to a flying start in round two as he had a 30-feet eagle putt on the opening 10th where he managed to extract a birdie. The 26-year-old went on to convert 15-footers for birdies on the 11thand 12th. His chip for eagle missed the hole by a whisker on the 15th where he picked up his fourth birdie of the day.

Lahiri carried on the good work on his second-nine as he collected birdies on the first, third, fourth and fifth. He nailed a 20-feet putt on the third and a 12-footer on the fifth.

The three-time Asian Tour winner recovered well from the bunker to salvage a birdie on the seventh before landing his chip within inches of the pin for his last birdie on the ninth. He thus signed off with a near-perfect bogey-free round.

Incidentally, Lahiri also holds the record for the joint lowest-to-par score in a single round ever recorded in India, thanks to his round of 12-under-60 posted a couple of years back in Greater Noida.

"It was pretty close to a dream round. I didn't miss a single green today and had eight one-putts. I felt good about my hitting as I did not hit bad golf shots unlike the first round.

"I was very calm through the day and judged the speed of the greens to perfection," said Lahiri, who won on the PGTI last week and last year made his debut appearance at a Major during the British Open.

The 2009 Rolex Rankings champion added: "Another positive aspect was finding the green in two shots on two par-5s, the 10thand fourth. I had three missed putts from a range of six to eight feet, but that's bound to happen in every round. I'd say I'm back on friendly terms with the course after the ordinary score in round one."

Lahiri's score was lower than the course record of 64, but did not count as a course record due to the application of the 'preferred lie' rules.

Sanjay Kumar (69-67), who is the joint holder of the course record of 64, sank six birdies against a lone bogey in his 67 Wednesday thanks to his good form with the wedges to finish one shot behind the leader.

Sri Lankan K. Prabagaran (68-69), the overnight joint leader, slipped to third place despite a solid 69 in round two. His total read seven-under-137.

Gurgaon's Arshpreet Thind and Rahil Gangjee of Kolkata, the other two joint leaders from round one, were placed tied fourth at five-under-139 along with Bangalore's Chikkarangappa S, Abhinav Lohan of Faridabad and Delhi's Naman Dawar.

The cut came down at three-over-147. Fifty-three professionals and one amateur made the cut.

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