Jeev fires 67, finishes 7th at Thailand

Seasoned golfer Jeev Milkha Singh primed well for the Hero Indian Open as he produced his best finish in over three years, signing off at tied seventh after the final round of the True Thailand Classic golf tournament here on Sunday.

Jeev, who had four birdies, including three on the back nine, also had an eagle and a bogey.   -  Reuters

Seasoned golfer Jeev Milkha Singh primed well for the Hero Indian Open as he produced his best finish in over three years, signing off at tied seventh after the final round of the True Thailand Classic golf tournament here on Sunday.

Jeev, who shot his third successive rounds in the 60s after an opening 73, finished the week with a five-under 67 that saw him total 11-under 277. It was his first top-10 finish since the T-10 at the Dubai Desert Classic in 2013.

At the top, Scott Hend held off a stunning late charge from home favourite Piya Swangarunporn. The Australian came into the final round at Black Mountain Golf Club with six shots ahead of Swanagarunporn but was a shot behind with five holes to play as the Thai fired a brilliant course record 63 to get to 17 under.

Among other Indians, Chiragh Kumar (68) was T-19, Arjun Atwal (66) and Rashid Khan (72) were T-25, Gaganjeet Bhullar (71) was T-35 and Himmat Rai (72) was T-35. The Indians return home next week for the Hero Indian Open.

“It feels good to play well again like this week,” said Jeev, who has been hit by injuries last couple of years.

Jeev, who had four birdies, including three on the back nine, also had an eagle and a bogey. He is now returning to India to play the Hero Indian Open, where he has never won but has finished top-10 before.

He added, “It’s been great to come back to this position. I’ve been working hard. I thought I found it at the Maybank Championship Malaysia but it’s taken a few weeks. At last it’s here. I’m happy with how it’s ended here, 11-under par in windy conditions. Hopefully it’s my first top-10 of the year and a lot more to come.”

Asked if he was excited about the Hero Indian Open, the 44-year-old said, “For sure, playing in front of home crowd, there’s always going to be pressure but it’s good pressure so that you can perform better and prove yourself and please all the crowds that support you. It’s a good week to look forward to because I take a lot of positive from out of this week.

“I’ve played at DGC since the age of nine and it’s not changed. There’s a lot of history to it, it’s a course where you need a lot of patience and you need to be strong mentally. Some holes, you want to go for it but you have to make sure you keep it in play and make your pars and move on. The event is now part of the Asian Tour and European Tour which shows the event has moved up and the field is going to be excellent next week and I’m looking forward to it.”

With this win, Hend could move into the top 80 in the Official World Golf Ranking. Belgium’s Thomas Pieters, who fired a closing 68, finished third on 15-under and a shot clear of American Peter Uihlein.