Randhawa moves to tied fourth in Manila Masters

The 43-year-old, who was Asia's No. 1 in 2002, is two shots behind Malaysia’s Nicholas Fung, who snatched the first round lead with a super six-under 66, four days after missing out on a maiden Asian Tour victory.

Jyoti Randhawa scored three birdies in the last four holes.   -  Sandeep Saxena (File Photo)

Indian golfer Jyoti Randhawa holed three birdies in the last four holes to register a four-under 68 and move to a crowded, tied fourth place after the first round of the USD one million Resorts World Manila Masters here today. Randhawa, who had top 10 finishes in Delhi and Singapore in his last two starts, has eight wins on Asian Tour in his career, but his last success came back in 2009.

The 43-year-old, who was Asia's No. 1 in 2002, is two shots behind Malaysia’s Nicholas Fung, who snatched the first round lead with a super six-under 66, four days after missing out on a maiden Asian Tour victory.

S. S. P. Chawrasia, starting on the 10th, had a strange seven-hole run, during which he birdied 14th and 15th, double bogeyed the 16th and then birdied the 17th and 18th. Then, he bogeyed the first and second during his round of two-under 70 that put him in the tied-27th place. Kapil Kumar (71) was tied 40th, Rahil Gangjee (72) was tied 54th, while Shiv Kapur and Khalin Joshi were tied 69th.

Shubhankar Sharma, S. Chikka and Chiragh Kumar carded 74 each to tied 84th, while Gaganjeet Bhullar and Jeev Milkha Singh were 101st with 75 each. Rashid Khan (76) struggled to 111th, and Himmat Rai (77) and Manav Jaini were further down.

'Form coming back'

“It felt good. I played well last week and that confidence is carrying on to this week. I thought I had a good chance last week as I played better than what I did here. I needed a good week, in fact, the last two weeks have been good,” Randhawa said. “The form is coming back. I know how to play, so it’s just a matter of getting the consistency going,” he added.

Meanwhile, at the top, the 25-year-old Fung, who has two top 10s in the richest golf tournament in the Philippines, showed his liking once more for the Manila Southwoods Golf and Country Club with a seven-birdie card to lead by one from Thailand’s Poom Saksansin and Chinese Taipei’s Hung Chien-yao.