Jeev tied second in Hong Kong Open

Hong Kong : Jeev Milkha Singh sizzled in his back nine to turn in a scintillating seven-under 63 and lie tied second after the opening round of the USD 2.5 million UBS Hong Kong Open here on Wednesday.

The Indian ace sank as many as seven birdies in a blemish-free round to share second spot with Ryder Cup star Rory McIlroy and lie one stroke behind Mark Brown of New
Zealand, who hit a sensational eight-under 62 here.

Anirban Lahiri was the second best Indian at tied 23rd with a three-under 67, while the trio of Jyoti Randhawa, Gaganjeet Bhullar and SSP Chowrasia were at tied 39th after
turning in matching two-under 68.

Shiv Kapur was tied 57th with a card of one-under 69.

Further down the leaderboard was Himmat Rai and C Muniyappa who carded one-over 71 and three-over 73 to lie tied 97 and tied 129 respectively.

Digvijay Singh was the lowest placed Indian at tied 139 with a card of five-over 75.

However, the day belonged to Jeev who shunned extravagance in his front nine and picked up a birdie at the third and parred the rest to take the turn at one-under.

But, it was his back nine where he went completely berserk as he dropped birdies at the 11th, before picking up a birdie hat-trict at the 13th, 14th and 15th holes.

On the last two holes, the two-time winner of the Asian Tour Order of Merit crown, sank two more birdies to end the day on a high.

"My mind-set was just go out there and follow my process on the tee and see what comes my way, and I stuck with that today really well. I wasn`t thinking about what I want to
shoot. I was just thinking a shot at a time and see what comes my way," Jeev said.

"The front nine is a tougher nine with two tough par 3s in there, and the ninth hole, also. I hit a lot of good putts. Didn`t hole many putts in the front nine, turned at 1-under, saved some good pars, also, like the first and the ninth, and on the back nine, I made a lot of putts, hit the ball well and shot 6-under and I will take a 7-under on this golf course," he added.

The Chandigarh golfer, who is coming out of a shoulder injury, said he is feeling much better now though he is still not 100 per cent.

"I`m feeling good, my shoulder is getting better, it`s not 100 per cent. I`ve been getting a lot of work done with the physios. I`m much better but not 100 per cent, so I`m just
waiting to play another two events and then head back home and try to get fit and get right for next year," he said.