September 27, 2017: Saaniya Sharma played some great golf as she carded a one-under par 71 and took sole lead after the first round of the 13th leg of the Hero Women’s Pro Golf Tour on Wednesday.
The 31-year-old Chandigarh golfer, who has been playing well in the second half of the season and won an event, too, had no less than five birdies and her card may well have been way better but for the double on par-4 ninth and a closing bogey on 18th. She also dropped a shot on Par-3 12th.
This is the 13th leg of the Tour and carries a purse of Rs. Six lakhs.
The leaderboard Saaniya Sharma ahead of Gaurika Bishnoi and Amandeep Drall, the top two on the Hero Order of Merit, who shared the second place with even par 72 each. Amandeep Drall had three birdies against as many bogeys, while Gaurika had a disappointing start on the front nine with three bogeys and one birdie for a two-over 38. She however flourished on the back nine with four birdies against two bogeys and finished at 72.
A combination of good golf and good conditions saw the leading players take advantage and bring in some good scores.
The next four golfers, Neha Tripathi (73), Trisha Sunil (74), Afshan Fatima (75) and Smriti Mehra (76) were each one shot apart and occupied the fourth to seventh places.
Mehar Atwal (78) was lying seventh while last week winner at DGC, Tvesa Malik (80) was down in Tied-9th alongside Ayesha Kapur (80).
Gursimar Badwal (85) and Siddhi Kapoor (86) also had a rough day at the course.
On the second day, Saaniya, Amandeep and Gaurika will go out in the lead group. The race at the top of the Order of Merit is knit tightly together, making this week important for the golfers at the top. There is less than 30,000 separating Amandeep and Gaurika.