Bengaluru’s Khalin Joshi became the lone leader with a combined score of nine under 135 after the Rs 70 lakh MP TATA Steel PGTI Cup matchday two game at Delhi Golf Club on Wednesday.
DGC is back on the golf map after a gap and in the last edition of the Asian Tour event, Khalin became the champion. It looks like the Bengaluru boy started from what he left on Wednesday in 2018. Confident in the put, Khalin hit a 66-under-six studded with seven birdies and a bogey to climb six places and take lead with a combined score of 135 under nine at the halfway point. On day one, Khalin was tied for seventh at three under 69.
Veer Ahlawat of Gurugram (72-65) shot the best score of the day of 65 to gain 37 places and move to second tied at seven under 137. Sri Lanka N Thangaraja (70-67) and the first round co- leader Manu Gandas (67-70) of Gurugram and Chikkarangappa S (67-70) of Bengaluru were also tied for second place with Veer.
The cut was increased to two out of 146. Fifty-two professionals and one amateur made the cut. Tokyo Olympian Udayan Mane missed the cut after his two-round score was 10 of 154 while star Jyoti Randhawa retired due to injury. Udayan also missed the Golconda Masters season opener in Hyderabad last month.
Khalin started the day off with a 15-foot birdie conversion on the first while adding two more birdies and a bogey on the front nine to complete the two-under turn for the day. The quadruple PGTI winner started to gain momentum on the back nine with an excellent approach shot from 140 yards on the 11th who landed inches from the pin for a birdie tap-in. He followed it up with a 15-foot putt for a 12th stop.
The 29-year-old finished the day with three more birdies on the last five holes. He shot another outstanding 130-yard approach on the 15th that narrowly missed the hole and gave him an easy birdie putt.
“My confidence comes from the fact that I putts well and that my corner play was great. I feel good about my game right now. I have fond memories of this course winning an Asian Tour event here in 2018. But the greens in the DGC are totally different now and it is now a striker course, something that I do. appreciate, ”Khalin said.
Veer not only went without error, but he did 16 greens in regulation and birdie.
“I feel that my course management is much better at DGC now than before. I play more carefully with my tee shots and try to attack with my approach shots. I also felt I could have gotten lower because I didn’t capitalize on all of the par-5s by birdies on just two of the four par-5s, ”said Veer.
Kolkata’s Viraj Madappa and Gurugram’s Kartik Sharma were tied for sixth at six under 138.
PGTI Order of Merit leader Karandeep Kochhar of Chandigarh was tied for eighth at five under 139.
Rashid Khan of Delhi, the overnight co-leader, slipped to tie 12th at four under 140 after a round of 73. Indian star Shiv Kapur shot a 67 to be tied for 15th at three under 141. Another Featured attraction SSP Chawrasia was tied for 34th at one in 145. First round co-leader Ajay Baisoya of Delhi was tied for 42nd at two of 146.
The only amateur to make the cut was Arvind Khanna of Delhi Golf Club who was tied for 42nd at two out of 146.