GOLF

Lahiri moves up leaderboard with 67 in 2nd round at John Deere Classic

Indian golfer Anirban Lahiri turned in a solid second round which ended with a painful bogey on his last hole, but still produced a card of 4-under 67 to move up the leaderboard in the USD 7.1 million John Deere Classic event.

The 35-year-old Lahiri, who started birdie-birdie from the 10th, was on a good run. He turned in 2-under and added birdies on first, third and fifth at which point he was 5-under for the day and 7-under for the event.

Another birdie or more could have brought him close to Top-10, but instead a bogey on ninth, his closing hole, dropped him to 6-under and with the rest of the field also finishing later, he was T-24 at the end of the second day, eight places better than the first day.

Lahiri is now nine shots behind the leader, J T Poston (62-65) who is 15-under and four ahead of second placed Denny McCarthy (66-65) at 11-under.

The top Asian star was Chinese Taipei's C T Pan who powered into tied seventh place at the halfway stage as he seeks to challenge for a second career PGA TOUR victory.

The 30-year-old Pan fired a flawless 7-under 64 to match for a two-day total of 9-under 133 and T-7.

Notable players to miss the cut were defending champion Lucas Glover, Cameron Champ, Webb Simpson and Brandt Snedeker.

The top three players not otherwise exempt in the top 10 and ties will qualify for the 150th Open Championship at St Andrews.

Lahiri hit 10 of 18 greens in regulation during his second round. He began well with a drive to the left side of the fairway on the par-5 10th and hit his 73 yard approach to 11 feet for birdie.

On the next, the 432-yard par-4 11th hole, Lahiri had a 145 yard approach shot, setting himself up for the birdie from inside six feet to move to 2-under.

On the 215-yard par-3 12th green, Lahiri suffered from a tough three-putt after missing a putt from 6-feet for a par. He made up on 14th. After a 316 yard drive on the 361-yard par-4 14th, Lahiri chipped his second shot to five feet, which he rolled in for a one-putt birdie on the hole to get back 2-under.

He again gave away a shot on Par-5 569-yard 17th. He got to the green in four and two-putted from 32 feet for a bogey.

He holed a 15-foot putt for birdie on first and then again hit a great approach to six feet on third for yet another birdie.

That was followed by another fine approach and a birdie from inside five feet. But on the 503-yard par-4 ninth, Lahiri had a bogey after hitting the green in 3 and two putting to finish 4-under for the round.

- PTI

Disastrous round sees Shubhankar miss cut at Irish Open

India's Shubhankar Sharma seemed all set for a fine second round after a solid first day as he had a birdie-birdie start from the 10th in the second round of Horizon Irish Open at Mount Juliet Estate.

Then everything went downhill with two double bogeys and two other bogeys between the 13th and 18th. He double bogeyed 13th and 16th and bogeyed 14th and 18th and there ended his hopes.

Shubhankar-Sharma

FILE PHOTO: Indian golfer Shubhankar Sharma.

 

On his second nine, the front stretch of the course, Sharma had one birdie and no more bogeys, but it was too late as he finished 3-over for the day and even for 36 holes, which was good enough only for tied 89th and he exited early.

It was Sharma's third straight missed cut and sixth one in seven starts with a tied 14th in between at Dutch Open.

Jorge Campillo moved into the halfway lead after the Spaniard carded a four under second round 68, even as 2019 Open winner, Shane Lowry delighted the local fans with birdies on last four holes to just make the cut after himself having resigned to an early exit.

- PTI

Amateur Avani, Diksha and Ridhima make cut in Germany

Amateur Avani Prashanth, playing her first Ladies European Tour event outside India, battled it out to make the cut at the Amundi German Masters.

Avani, who shot 72 in the first round added 74 in the second and ensured two more rounds despite a disappointing double bogey on the 18th hole in the second round. Avani, who has already won professional events while being an amateur on her local Hero Women's Pro Tour in India, was tied 58th.

Also making the cut was Diksha Dagar (72-73) with a determined effort that included 17 pars and one bogey in her 73 and was the best Indian at 1-over 145. She was tied 48th.

The third Indian to make the cut was Ridhima Dilawari, who after a superb 68 in first round slipped to 78 in the second but made the weekend on the cutline which fell at 2-over. Ridhima was tied 58th alongside Avani Prashanth.

Dilawari had just one birdie against five bogeys and a double bogey. While she finished her round on Friday itself, she had to wait till Saturday morning to know her fate and fortunately enough she made the cut at 2-over 146.

Three other Indians -- Amandeep Drall (71-77), Tvesa Malik (76-77) and Vani Kapoor (74-79) -- missed the cut.

Jessica Karlsson was on the top of the leaderboard on 12-under-par at the end of day two. It was a disrupted day of play on Friday and the second round was completed on Saturday.

- PTI

TENNIS

ITF women’s tournament: Yamalapalli outplays fourth seed Yashina

Sahaja Yamalapalli was in explosive form as she outplayed fourth seed Ekaterina Yashina 6-0, 6-1 in the semifinals of the $25,000 ITF women’s tennis tournament at the Tennis Project, Baliawas, on Saturday.

The hopes of an all-India final vanished as second seed Ankita Raina was beaten 6-3, 6-4 by third seed Viktoria Morvayova of Slovakia. Ankita did fight back to be 4-2 in the second set, but did not have the energy to sustain her good game against an opponent who played at
a high intensity.

Ankita did have the consolation of winning the doubles title with Priska Madelyn Nugroho of Indonesia. The duo bounced back from a slow start to beat the Japanese second seeds Momoko Kobori and Misaki Matsuda 3-6, 6-0, [10-6] in the final.

Quite remarkably, it was the third doubles match in the day for the Japanese who had to negotiate their quarterfinals and semifinals also earlier. The rain had upset the schedule on the last two days, and with the players booked for return, it was imperative to finish the
engagements, made possible owing to the bright weather.

Ankita and Priska also finished their doubles semifinals earlier in the day, beating top seeds Rutuja Bhosale and Diana Marcinkevica for the loss of four games.

The day did belong to the 21-year-old Sahaja who rarely put a foot wrong. With coach Cesar Morales of the Padukone-Dravid Centre of Excellence drawing precise game plans for each opponent, Sahaja had to merely execute. She did so with distinction, latching on to the pace and driving into empty space with conviction, much to the exasperation of her Russian opponent .

Sahaja reeled off the first ten games before allowing a token game for the Russian, who broke down late in the match, unable to bear with her clinical execution.

With Karman Thandi having won the last tournament at the same venue, it has already been a very fruitful fortnight for Indian women’s tennis.

- Kamesh Srinivasan

Asian Under-14: Rawat beats Sameira Kohli

Katyaini Rawat beat Sameira Kohli 7-6(5), 3-6, [10-8] to qualify into the girls main draw of the Asian Under-14 tennis tournament at the Tennis Project, Baliawas, on Saturday.

- Kamesh Srinivasan

Challenger tournament: Jeevan, Balaji lose semifinals

Top seeds Sriram Balaji and Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan were beaten 6-4, 1-6, [10-6] in the doubles semifinals by the Americans Keegan Smith and Evan Zhu in the $53,120 Challenger tennis tournament in Colombia.

It was the first loss in three tournaments for the Indian pair which had won the last two Challengers on clay in Europe.

In the ITF women’s tournament in Tunisia, seventh seed Jennifer Luikham was beaten 6-1, 6-3 in the semifinals by Manon Leonard of France.

- Kamesh Srinivasan

BOXING

Elorda Cup: Kalaivani enters women's 48kg final

Promising boxer S. Kalaivani gave a fine performance to beat Uzbekistan’s Farzona Fozilova 5-0 and book a berth in the women’s 48kg final at the Elorda Cup boxing tournament in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan on Saturday.

In the semifinals, Kalaivani, a bronze medallist in the National championships, displayed her aggression to register a 5-0 win.

Former World youth champion Jyoti Gulia (52kg) lost in the semifinals to take the bronze medal. 

- Y. B. Sarangi

SNOOKER

Sourav Kothari wins

Oozing with confidence, PSPB's Sourav Kothari raced to a 7-2 victory over Laxman Rawat in the best-of-13-frame finals of the NSCI All India Snooker Open 'Baulkline' 2022 here on Saturday.

Kothari, who recently had won both the snooker and billiards titles in the Pacific International Championship in Melbourne, recorded a comfortable 95-17, 37-75, 64-05, 70-77, 116-01, 124-05, 70-23, 91-50 71-39 win.

The 37-year-old Kolkata-based Kothari compiled breaks of 65 (1st frame), 58 (4th), 83 (5th) and 107 in the sixth, while Laxman managed a solitary break of 63 in winning the fourth.

Kothari was presented the champions' trophy and the winners' cheque of Rs two lakh, while Laxman received the runners-up trophy and a cheque of Rs one lakh.

-PTI