Golconda Masters: Veer Ahlawat takes the lead

Ahlawat, at 14-under 199, holds a one-shot lead after the third round; Udayan Mane delivers a 65 to be placed second.

Veer Ahlawat carded a five-under-66 in the third round. - SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Gurugram’s Veer Ahlawat produced a classy five-under 66 to emerge the leader in Round 3 of the Vooty & Haldi Golconda Masters golf championship, a ₹40 lakh tourney, at the Hyderabad Golf Cub here on Friday.

Ahlawat held a one-shot lead at 14-under 199 while Pune’s Udayan Mane delivered a 65 on the windiest day of the tournament to be placed second at 13-under 200. Halfway-leader Khalin Joshi of Bengaluru slipped to third place after a round of 71 to take his total to 11-under 202.

SECOND ROUND REPORT

Ahlawat (65-68-66), lying second and two off the lead at the halfway stage, made a brisk start for the second day in succession as he birdied four of the first six holes thanks to two long putts and two quality chip-putts. He dropped a double-bogey after finding the water on the seventh. Thereafter, the birdies dried up for the 23-year-old in the middle stages of the round.

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Ahlawat finally bounced back with birdies on the 15th, 16th and 18th.

Veer, who recorded a career-best fifth place finish on the PGTI rankings in 2019, sank a 25-footer on the 16th and landed his approach from 100 yards to within three feet on the 18th.

Khalin Joshi mixed four birdies with two bogeys and a double-bogey during his 71 that placed him third at 11-under 202.

Patna’s Aman Raj (68) and Delhi’s Shamim Khan (69) were in tied fourth at 10-under 203.