Bhullar lone Indian to break par in Jakarta
Jakarta: Gaganjeet Bhullar was the only one to break par on an otherwise disappointing day for the Indians in the first round of the Indonesian Masters Golf tournament.
Bhullar shot one-under 71 and was placed tied 32nd, five shots off the leader Bangladesh's Siddikur Rehman. Siddikur shot an opening six-under-par 66 to lead on day one but has world number two Lee Westwood trailing by two.
There were six players at tied second with 67 each and the bunch included Thais Thongchai Jaidee and Prayad Marksaeng and Lam Chih Bing. Also at 67 were Filipino Antonio Lascuna and Koreans Park Hyun-bin and Hwang Inn-choon in the USD 750,000 showpiece event.
Indians failed to make use of ideal scoring conditions, but the man from Bangladesh fired two superb chip-ins to hold a one stroke lead from the chasing pack at Royale Jakarta Golf Club.
Of the other Indians, Firoz Ali and Sujjan Singh were tied 46th with 72 each, while Digvijay Singh and Vikrant Chopra carded 73 each to be tied 63rd.
Manav Jaini and Amandeep Johl were tied 76th with 74 each, while Himmat Rai and Anirban Lahiri carded 76 each to be tied 101st. Gaurav Ghei and Jyoti Randhawa were placed at 113th with 77 each and will need good second round cards to stay on for the weekend.
Englishman Westwood, the hot favourite to win the tournament, was among seven players tied in eighth place on identical 68. If he wins this week and Luke Donald does not in the United States, Westwood will regain his world number one spot from Martin Kaymer.
The Bangladeshi, who started from the 10th tee, said he was lucky to take the lead after holing out from 15 and 30 feet on holes 10 and two respectively.
Thongchai, a three-time Asian Tour Order of Merit champion, who played with Siddikur and Westwood turned in 30 highlighted by an eagle three on the 12th hole. He was firmly in the lead before dropping a costly double bogey on the first hole.