Bangkok, May 19 (PTI) Experienced golfer Jeev Milkha Singh turned the clock back with a flawless eight-under 63 while Gaganjeet Bhullar carried on the momentum with a five- under 66 to grab a share of the lead at the halfway stage of the USD 300,000 Thailand Open here today.
Bhullar, twice winner on the season on Asian Tour last year, and young Thai Rattanon Wannasrichan shared the lead at 11-under 131 after the second round here.
Jeev, who last won in 2012, and is a two-time winner of Asian Tour order of Merit, admitted he did not even remember when he last shot a 63, as he had eight birdies against no bogeys.
The 45-year-old from Chandigarh at eight-under 134, and three shots behind Bhullar, is Tied-fifth.
Another Indian doing well is Shiv Kapur, winner of the Asian Tour event last month in Taiwan. Kapur added a four- under 67 to his first round 70 to be five-under 137 and Tied- 23rd.
Of the other 10 Indians in the fray, Shankar Das (71-67) was Tied-30th, rookie Arjun Prasad (70-69) was T-38th, while four others Khalin Joshi (70-70), Himmat Rai (69-71), Chiragh Kumar (71-69) and Shubankar Sharma (72-68) were all Tied-50th at two-under.
Scraping under the cut line was also S Chikkarangappa (72-69) in T-66th but Sujjan Singh, Rahil Gangjee and Honey Baisoya missed the cut.
Starting the day with a three-shot deficit, the 29-year- old Bhullar traded six birdies against one bogey to move atop the leaderboard with overnight co-leader Rattanon, who battled to a 69, on 11-under 131 total at the scenic Thai Country Club.
Bhullar said, “I pretty much played the same way like I played yesterday. I gave myself a lot of birdie opportunities.
I made six birdies yesterday and six birdies today. I just made one mistake on the eighth hole today and that’s about it.
“I hit more greens in regulation yesterday and I missed a few today. It wasn’t as windy today. It was pretty calm out there. I had quite a few good birdies. I got off to a good start with a birdie on the first.”
Jeev smiled and said, “It has been awhile since I have shot a 63. In fact, I can’t remember when I last shot a 63.
When you shoot a score like that, you just hope to build on it.
“I tried something new this week. I have been struggling with my driver. I started to ground the driver after I won the Scottish Open in 2012. Before that, I used to have it up in the air before hitting the ball.
“I gave it some thoughts this week and I decided to switch back to how I used to play. To my surprise, I am driving the ball a lot better now. It has given me a lot of confidence. Other than that, I am hitting my irons good and my short game is alright.”
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.