Shubhankar Sharma produces a fighting 71 in The Open

Another stoic round of golf helped Shubhankar Sharma stay even on the second day of the 151st Open Championship. At 3-under through 36 holes, the Indian is lying T3 with Min Woo Lee. Brian Harman has the solo lead at 10-under 132.

Shubhankar Sharma

21 July 2023: After a good start to the 151st Open Championship, Shubhankar Sharma needed to remain firmly in control to push forward into contention. On his 27th birthday, the man from Chandigarh produced another disciplined performance to solidify his presence high up on the Open’s golden leaderboard. Brian Harman put daylight between himself and others though with a sensational 65 including an eagle on the 18th hole. At 10-under, he is five strokes clear of Tommy Fleetwood (who is through 14 holes).

Harman went on a tear at the second. He would secure four straight birdies from there to climb to 8-under by the time he reached the sixth tee. The biggest threat to his card came at the 12th hole, where he missed the green to the right. But he brought out a big cheer when he chipped in to save par and keep the card clean. That was how he would finish the day, but not before adding a final flourish at the tricky 18th hole. Harman reached the green in two and nailed the 12-footer dead centre to extract an eagle from the course.

A fine birdie at the seventh was the highlight of the day for Shubhankar. He was well off the green after missing his approach to the right. But Shubhankar made the putt from 15 yards for a rousing birdie. Even though the course extracted the shot back on the very next hole, it was clear that the Indian had the measure of the course.

Shubhankar did well to gain strokes on both the par-5s on the home stretch. He made birdies at the 15th and 18th holes. But the wind at the 17th took a toll on his card. Shubhankar floated an eight-iron into the native wasteland that lies beyond the undulating green. With no easy way out, he went sideways into the rough, before chipping to the green. But he was left with 23 feet for bogey, a task that was hardly feasible on a deck that dives in all directions. The double bogey there was the only significant stain on an otherwise hard earned 71. Of course there was also a bogey on the 8th, but a fine chipped in birdie on the seventh took care of that.

At 3-under Shubhankar is lying T3 with Min Woo Lee. Ahead of him are Fleetwood at 5-under (14 holes) and Harman at 10-under. Sepp Straka and Cameron Young are also at 3-under with Jason Day for company, all of them still on the course.