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CHINNARAT STORMS TO EARLY LEAD AT SAIL OPEN
Young Thai star Chinnarat Phadungsil made a spirited start to take the early lead at the SAIL Open with an impressive first round score of six-under-par 66 on Tuesday.
Starting on the back nine, the immensely talented Thai posted a flawless round highlighted by four birdies and an eagle three to open up a two-stroke lead after the completion of the morning round at the Delhi Golf Club.
The afternoon play is currently in progress.
Indian duo Gaganjeet Bhullar, winner of the season-opening Asian Tour International in Bangkok, and veteran Gaurav Ghei and Mark Purser of New Zealand posted matching 68s for a share of second place in the US$300,000 event which is celebrating its third edition on the Asian Tour Schedule.
Asian Tour rookie Sean Shahi of the United States, who was on seven-under-par at one stage before dropping two costly double bogeys, closed with a 69 to lie in tied fifth position alongside Thailand’s Pol Kemmarat and local stalwarts C. Muniyappa and Himmat Rai.
Chinnarat, who holds the distinction as the youngest winner on the Asian Tour when he won the Double A International Open on home soil at the age of 17 in 2005, turned in 34 and then produced an eagle on the first hole after his five wood approach landed 15 feet from the hole.
He credited his pint point iron shots where he found 16 greens en route to taking the early lead. “That is one of the key reasons why I shot such a good score but I’m slightly disappointed because I missed some short putts,” said the three-time Asian Tour winner.
“I changed my swing when I played at the Asian Tour International (Thailand) and didn’t play well. But I’m more confident with my swing now and I’m slowly getting back to my best form. I just need to sink more putts,” added the Thai.