CG Open: Chadha, Pathania share halfway lead

Chadha (68-65), the highest-ranked player in the field, took a giant leap from overnight tied 14th place to joint first as a result of his error-free 65. He had a solid front nine, making all greens in regulation and two-putts thereafter for pars all through.

Abhijit Singh Chadha.   -  The Hindu

Chandigarh’s Abhijit Singh Chadha and Greater Noida’s Mandeo Singh Pathania shared the halfway lead in the Rs 1 crore CG Open Golf Championship with identical totals of seven-under-133 here today.

While Chadha shot the day’s joint best of five-under-65 in round two, Pathania produced a two-under-68 on a high-scoring day at the BPGC course in Chembur.

Six golfers, including Sri Lankan N Thangaraja, Noida’s Gaurav Pratap Singh, Lucknow’s Sanjeev Kumar, Chandigarh’s Sujjan Singh, Delhi’s Vinod Kumar and Gurgaon-based Digvijay Singh, were bunched together in tied third at six-under-134.

N Thangaraja, Gaurav Pratap Singh, Sanjeev Kumar, Sujjan Singh, Vinod Kumar and Digvijay Singh were joint sixth, one shot off the lead. The cut was declared at two-over-142 and 51 professionals made it.

Chadha (68-65), the highest-ranked player in the field, took a giant leap from overnight tied 14th place to joint first as a result of his error-free 65. He had a solid front nine, making all greens in regulation and two-putts thereafter for pars all through.

The 24-year-old golfer, a winner on the PGTI this year, then turned on the heat with three consecutive birdies from the 10th to the 12th. He rained 10-feet putts on the 10th and 11th before converting a 20-footer on the 12th.

Chadha recovered well for good par saves on the 15th and 17th after being in a spot of trouble on both holes. He finally closed with a flourish thanks to an eagle on the par-5 18th where he landed his approach within six feet of the pin.

“I was steady through the front-nine today even though the putts burnt the edges and didn’t roll in. From there on I knew that I needed a hot back-nine to stay in the tournament.

I was quite relieved when my first birdie putt found the hole on the 10th. I then enjoyed a good stretch till the 12th grabbing my opportunities on the greens,” said Chadha.

Pathania (65-68), who was overnight tied second, made birdies on all the four par-fives courtesy his brilliant hitting.

He narrowly missed a hole-in-one for the second straight day when his tee shot landed a few inches from the flag on the sixth. The 2010 winner mixed his five birdies with three bogeys as his putting was the weaker link yet again.