Himmat, Muniyappa enjoy joint lead in PGTI Players C`ship

Pune: Himmat Singh Rai of Delhi and Bangalore`s C Muniyappa shot three under 68 to share the lead on day two of the Aircel PGTI Players Championship.

The joint leaders have an overall score of four under 138. Delhi`s Shamim Khan is just one shot behind the leaders in third place.

The cut was declared at eight over 150 on a rain-marred day at the Poona Club Golf Course that witnessed higher scores as compared to round one.

Fifty-six professionals and two amateurs made the cut.

Himmat Singh Rai, a winner on the Aircel PGTI in 2009, made four birdies and a lone bogey in his second round. He hit it well and capitalised on two of the three par fives (12th and seventh) as he sank birdies on those holes. He also birdied the 13th and the fourth.

"I was high on confidence going into this tournament as I struck some good form at the Asian Tour event last week, where I finished tied 18th. I played really well today and was quite satisfied with my effort," said Himmat.

"I`m now reaping the rewards of the changes I made in my game towards the end of 2009 relating to my swing, technique and psychology," he added.

Asian Tour winner Muniyappa, the reigning Indian Open champion, had a much more eventful second round as compared to Himmat. The Bangalore golfer`s round featured an eagle, two birdies and a double bogey as he played during the second half of the day which witnessed heavy rain that even caused suspension of play for over an hour.

"My hitting was excellent today but putting was not up to the mark. The rain in the second half of the day made it extremely tough to judge the speed of the greens. The eagle on the par five 12th hole was the highlight of my round. I landed my second shot seven feet from the pin for the eagle on the 12th," said Muniyappa.

Shamim Khan is placed third at three under 139 while Gaganjeet Bhullar, round one leader Manav Jaini and Om Prakash Chouhan share fourth place at two under 140. Vijay Kumar, Vinod Kumar, Rahil Gangjee and Digvijay Singh are a further stroke back in tied seventh place.

Mukesh Kumar and Pune-based amateur Aditya Bhandarkar are in tied 20th at two over 144. Pune golfers Gurki Shergill (six over 148) and Dinesh Raghuvanshi (seven over 149) are placed tied 39th and tied 45th respectively.

Anirban Lahiri`s eight over 150 total placed him tied 52nd.

Defending champion Mohd Siddikur Rahman of Bangladesh missed the cut as he posted a two-round total of 12 over 154.


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