SIDDIKUR EYES FINAL ROUND FLOURISH AT OMEGA EUROPEAN MASTERS
Crans Montana, Switzerland: The Asians failed to mount a title challenge in the third round of the Omega European Masters on Saturday but Siddikur of Bangladesh insists there is still much to play for.
Siddikur posted a two-under-par 69 and is determined to go all out in the final round of the €2 million (approximately US$2.6 million) showpiece co sanctioned by the Asian Tour and European Tour.
Siddikur, who is the first Bangladeshi to play and win on the Asian Tour, made his debut at the Crans-sur-Sierre Golf Club in 2010 where he missed the halfway cut. But he has been a revelation this season where he has three-top 10s and is currently second on the Order of Merit.
He knows he has a strong opportunity to narrow the gap on current Order of Merit leader S.S.P. Chowrasia of India, who missed the halfway cut at the Omega European Masters.
“It is going to be a long haul towards the end of the season and this tournament is the best opportunity for me to try and cut Chowrasia’s lead. I’m quite confident of pushing myself further up the leaderboard,” he said.
Siddikur, 26, was cruising on four-under through 17 holes but two putted on the last for double bogey after his approach shot landed in the water.
“I’m quite happy with the round unfortunately I hit a bad second shot on the last. My hitting has been excellent but I need to get my putter going,” said Siddikur, who is on a three-day total of five-under-par 208.
Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand he rued a cold putter in a mixed round of six birdies, one bogey and two double bogeys. He shared 34th place with Siddikur on 208.
“I had two double bogeys and three putted on two holes. I hit the ball very well but it was my putting which let me down. I’ve also lost confidence in my putting,” said Thongchai, who shot a third round 70.
“I lost my concentration halfway through my round and couldn’t convert the up-and-downs. Normally my short game is very good but it didn’t work for me. Hopefully I’ll get it going on the final day,” he added.
Jeev Milkha Singh of India, a two-time Asian Tour number one, birdied his opening two holes but couldn’t maintain the momentum as he registered a further birdie against three bogeys.
The Asian Tour honorary member admitted he was disappointed with his erratic drives. “I hit a few bad drives and lost confidence on the back nine. It was a windy and tough day. I tried to hang in there and shot even-par. I felt that I had a good chance to shoot five or six-under and I had such a great start but let it go.”
Photo - Asian Tour
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