New Delhi, Oct 9 (UNI) China's Liang Wen Chong set the course on fire as he shot an awesome record shattering 12 under par 60, while Jeev Milkha Singh shot a flawless 65, his best round ever at the DGC, on the opening day of the One Million Dollar Hero Honda Indian Open Golf here today.
The previous Delhi Golf Course (DGC) record of 10 under par 62 was set by Shiv Kapur last year.
US PGA tour winner Daniel Chopra, unfancied Sanjay Kumar and Chinese Taipei's Lu Wen-teh all shot identical 6 under par 66 to be placed joint third.
Daniel, playing here after a gap of six years, shot six birdies - two in the first nine and four in the second to total 66.
Sanjay hit a birdie on the eighth as he scored 35 on his way out and coming back fired five birdies on the 11th, 12th, 14th, 16th and 17th to end the round on 66.
Lu Wen was playing well and had six birdies in his kitty till the 15th hole but a bogey on the 16th spoilt his card though he shot a birdie in the 17th to finish the round on a satisfactory note.
Another Indian who stole the limelight was Karanjit Sandhu who returned a four under 68 card. He was at the joint ninth place along with veteran Mukesh Kumar who hit five birdies (1st, eighth, 11th,14th and 17th) but also had a bogey on the 12th.
Defending champion and three-time winner Jyoti Randhawa had a poor opening round of two over par 74 and was lying way down the leaderboard while three other former champions Ali Sher and Mardan Mamat (Singapore) and Mike Cunning (US) returned identical cards of 72.
The 30-year-old Chinese who won the Singapore Masters last year, stunned everybody with a display rarely seen on this historic course.
He had an incredible eight birdies off the first nine holes and parred the fourth hole, while on his return he carded four more birdies to close the round with a score of 60 which included 12 birdies.
Thirty seven-year-old Chandigarh based pro Jeev Milkha Singh, who has yet to win a major tournament in the country, started brilliantly, firing an eagle and then had two more birdies in his first nine and on his way back he shot three more birdies on the 13th, 14th and 18th for 7 under 65.
''The course is playing excellent. It is there for the taking.
The Greens are rolling well and the scoring today has been great.
The greens were playing pure and true,'' Jeev said after his round.
''I am pretty happy. It was my best round ever at the DGC. The previous was 66,'' he added. ''I was rock solid and consistent.
I hit a lot of good bunkers and had a 100 per cent sand saves.
I just did not bring out the driver, though I had it in the bag.
I used the 3-wood with the thought that 'why use the driver, when the 3-wood is doing the job'.'' The Indian was full of praise for the leader of the round - Liang Wen Chong - saying,''it was incredible. That is the word for it. Actually I had no idea. I have never had anyone shoot 12-under in a tournament. It was amazing. I thought he could be 10-under something, but 12-under is something else. A course record by two and that really means something. A 12-under never comes easy, no matter how easy the course. I have played well, but I am five behind.'' Liang was modest about his record setting round. ''Everything worked well today, it was a good round,'' he said and added,''tee shot is the key here. I have had top-10 finishes on the Asian tour this year but more importantly I always strive to refine my game and keep improving. Also yoga has helped me a lot. It helped me relax and provided extra strength from within when I am out on the course.'' Unheralded Pakistani Muhammad Munir displayed his wares with a commendable three under par 69 to be clubbed with Lam Chih Bing (Singapore) Gaurav Ghei, Lian Steel (Malaysia) and Australian Gavin Flint.
Ghei, who had six birdies, spoiled his card with a triple bogey on the ninth.
Ashok Kumar also ruined his day with two double bogeys on the fourth and the 16th. He shot seven birdies and ended the round two under.
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