Jeev Milkha Singh endured a painful finish with three bogeys on the trot, but still managed to end at two-over 74 to be tied 33rd at the midway stage of the AFrAsia Bank Mauritius Open here today. He was among the seven Indians who made the cut from the 11 who started off yesterday at the Four Seasons Golf Club here.
With the strong anticyclone winds hitting the golf course, the conditions were rather difficult and just about 10 players managed to bring home an under-par round and none of them were Indians.
Chiragh Kumar (74) and Himmat Rai (73), both of whom have just one Asian Tour win each against their name, were the best Indians to be tied for 22nd as they were two-over 146 for 36 holes. One shot behind them was Jeev.
Jyoti Randhawa (73-75) was 46th, Rahil Gangjee (73-76), Rashid Khan (68-81) and Arjun Atwal (73-76) were tied 57th.
However, Gaganjeet Bhullar (74-78), Shiv Kapur (75-78), Shubhankar Sharma (78-81) and Khalin Joshi (86-84) missed out.
Meanwhile, overnight leader Andrew Dodt extended his lead from two to three shots at the top and behind him was Korean Wang Jeunghun in second place.
Also making the weekend was Daniel Chopra (76-74). Jeev said he would be looking to minimise the errors in the last two rounds.
“I was going great guns till I hit the last stretch. I missed the green slightly on seventh and then gave away bogeys on eighth and ninth, too. I was pushing hard and I knew an under par score would go a long way. So, the finish was disappointing, just like the start was yesterday,” Jeev said.
“Anyway, the conditions are going to be challenging next two days also, so the scores could be high and it will be crucial to minimise errors,” he said, adding, “Personally I am hitting well and playing well after a long time. So I am looking forward to the last two rounds.”
Rashid, who yesterday carded a superb four-under 68 to be placed tied 2nd, two shots off leader Dodt, had a tough time with 10 bogeys and just a birdie today. He had five in a row from second to sixth and the four in a row from 14th to 17th.
Blustery conditions at the Ernie Els designed layout on the Mauritian east coast made any score under par very valuable indeed and Wang’s 70 proved to be one of the best rounds of the morning.
Dodt extended his lead to three shots. The Australian came into the second round with a two-shot advantage after a brilliant opening 66 and added a 70, which included a double bogey, to move to eight under and establish a cushion over last week’s winner Wang.
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