SSP Chawrasia gets off to a measured start

Anand Datla Gurugram, March 09, 2017: At the end of a testing day of golf at the DLF Golf and Country Club, defending champion SSP Chawrasia was left …

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SSP Chawrasia

Anand Datla

Gurugram, March 09, 2017: At the end of a testing day of golf at the DLF Golf and Country Club, defending champion SSP Chawrasia was left with work to do. The ace Indian golfer was among a bunch of men who were yet to complete their first round on a weather marred first day in the Hero Indian Open. Chawrasia was lying one under through 15 holes, in his quest to emulate Jyoti Randhawa. The latter was the last man to defend this title; Randhawa won the Indian Open in 2006 and 2007.

Chawrasia made eleven straight pars before making the first birdie of his round. The man from Kolkata, ranked 258th on the OWGR, took a bogey at the 14th before recovering the lost shot at the very next hole. However, poor light halted play soon as he completed his putt at the 15th hole.

“It’s a good start as one expects it to be a high-scoring week. I didn’t drop any shots on the front-nine but missed at least four birdie opportunities from close range,” rued Chawrasia.

The birdie miss from three feet on the eighth was a disappointing one,” explained Chawrasia, a victim of the pace on the greens. “I feel that is the toughest par-5 hole and a birdie there would’ve really lifted my confidence.”

Chawrasia also had to get off the course, when the European Tour officials decided to halt play for the risk of lightning.

“The weather interruption didn’t really bother me. In fact my round took off after the break,” added Chawrasia. “I made two eight feet birdie conversions on the 12th and 15th after play resumed.”

Chawrasia will look to come out and play well early tomorrow morning, to ensure that he protects his card. “An under-par opening round would give me a good platform to build on so that will be the focus when I resume the first round tomorrow,” said the smiling golfer.

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