Atwal tied 120th after rd 1 of Chrysler Championship
Miami, Oct 27 (UNI) Arjun Atwal's bid to retain his PGA Tour card for next season did not get off to a very good start as he carded a poor five-over 76 to be tied 120th after the opening round of the season ending 5.3 million dollar Chrysler Championship here.
The disappointment continued for Orlando-based Atwal, who managed a lone birdie against four bogeys and a double bogey.
Struggling to find his feet, Atwal could not have started on a worse note as he stumbled to a double bogey on the third before dropping another shot on the fourth.
Atwal, who has played full time on the US PGA Tour since 2005, hit another bogey on the seventh to make the turn at four-over.
Battling to keep his card with a top-125 finish on the money list, on which the Indian star is presently 137th, Atwal recovered from the initial setbacks to gain a shot on the 11th but it all went downhill for him after this as he hit successive bogeys on the 16th and 17th to end his unimpressive day.
In contrast, Indian-born Swede Daniel Chopra made a strong start and was tied for the third spot after a sizzling four-under 67 which saw him mixing five birdies with a lone bogey.
Chopra could have been a step higher on the leaderboard if he had not dropped a shot on the last hole. The Swede is just three shots behind leader Brian Gay of US.
Atwal desperately needs a good finish on Sunday to avoid a dreaded trip to the Qualifying School. The former Asian Tour regular has accumulated 550,535 dollar this season and trails the 125th ranked Bubba Dickerson by nearly 100,000 dollar.
The 2004 Asian number one has missed the cut on 16 out of 32 events so far and has only one top-10 finish this year, a tied for fourth place at the Buick Invitational at the start of the year.
The Chrysler Championship is the final full-field event in the US this season, with the top-30 on the money list qualifying for the Tour Championship next week.
UNI XC PM SK BST1048