Ashok Kumar,Digvijay Singh, register easy wins in SRF Golf Matchplay

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New Delhi, Mar 12 (UNI) Top seeds Ashok Kumar and Digvijay Singh registered comfortable wins in the second round of the All India Professional Golf Matchplay Championship to enter the pre-quarter final stage, while third seed Gaganjeet Bhullar was upstaged by Sandeep Syal.

Defending champion and first seed Ashok Kumar trounced Vinod Kumar 7 and 6. He will now meet R Srinivas who got the better of Amardip Sinh Malik with a score of 4 and 3 in the last 16.

Second seed Digvijay Singh posted an emphatic 5 and 4 win against Sri Lanka's B G Lalith Kumara to set up a clash with Naman Dawar in the next round. Dawar ended Jaiveer Virk's challenge with a 5 and 3 victory over him.

The biggest upset of the day was third seed Gaganjeet Bhullar's loss to thirty fifth seed Sandeep Syal. The match went down to the wire as Syal won 1 up.

Syal won the first, sixth, ninth, 11th, 17th and 18th holes while Bhullar won the second, eighth, 10th, 14th and 16th.

''I didn't play exceptionally well today but just hung in there.

I was 1 down after 16 holes but fought back by wrapping up the 17th and 18th holes. A good tee shot on the 17th helped me bounce back,'' Syal said.

Syal now faces Harendra Gupta in the pre-quarters.

Gupta recorded a 1 up second round win against Roop Singh.

Meanwhile, Rahul Ganapathy's campaign came to an end when former Indian Open champion Ali Sher defeated him in a crucial encounter.

Ali Sher, who won 1 up against Ganapathy, will face be C Muniyappa who defeated Gurbaaz Mann 3 and 2 in the next round.

Shamim Khan emerged victorious against Shiv Prakash in the closest match of the day. Shamim won on the third playoff hole (21st hole).

Vivek Bhandari beat Chiragh Kumar 4 and 3, Arjun Singh beat Himmat Singh Rai 5 and 4 while Vijay Kumar beat Randhir Singh Ghotra 3 and 2.

In other matches, Fifth seed Lam Chih Bing of Singapore prevailed over Kolkata's Shankar Das being 2 holes up with 1 to be played. It was a see-saw battle as Lam Chih started well and then Shankar caught up and established a 1 up lead at the turn.

Lam Chih finally came through by winning five holes on the trot on the back nine.

''I didn't play well on the front nine but came back strongly on the back nine. Shankar's bogeys on the back nine helped my cause,'' Lam Chih said.

Lam Chih Bing will take on Mukesh Kumar in the pre-quarters.

Mukesh beat Sri Lankan Anura Rohana 4&3.Manav Jaini secured a 2 and 1 win over Shaurya Singh. Shaurya had upset fourth seed Harmeet Kahlon in round one. Jaini now faces Uttam Singh Mundy in the last 16. Mundy beat A S Lehal 5 and 3.

The pre-quarters and the quarter finals will be played on Thursday, March 13.

UNI XC AB ND1852

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