Favourite Nur Durriah Damian of Malaysia could afford to drop two bogeys in the last three holes and still finish on top of the heap at the end of the 36-hole stroke play competition of the 100th USHA All India Ladies Amateur Championships today. The 21-year-old three-time Malaysian Ladies Amateur winner, Nur, who had a first round 73, shot a similar card of one-over 73 to finish two-over 146 and entered the Match Play section of the Championship as the top seed. She will clash Gurjot Badwal (79-85), who made it to the knock out stage as the last qualifier.

All the top players made it to the final 32 for the Match play at the at the Delhi Golf Club. Nur was aided by three birdies in the middle of the round between the seventh and 11th holes on the seventh, eighth and 11th holes and that helped her keep the edge over the rest of the field.

The win also earned Nur the Billoo Sethi Stroke Play Trophy awarded to the best player in the stroke play rounds of the Championships. India’s Seher Atwal, who came in from the United States for the Championships, moved up from third to second with a round of 73 with a fairly steady showing. (Diksha Dagar, Tvesa Malik top Indian contenders at All India Ladies Golf)

She had two birdies, a bogey and a double bogey. Finishing third was Ananya Barthakur, the overnight leader, who followed up her first round 73 with a 75. Ananya started disastrously with a triple bogey on first and a double on third. But she recovered well to finish at 75 with the help of three birdies, though she had yet another bogey, too.

Ireland’s Maria Dunne, shot the only sub-par round of the competition with a two-under 70 that included three birdies in last six holes. She finished at 149 (79-70) to be fourth Tvesa Malik (78-73) was fifth.

Diksha Dagar (77-78) was Tied-10th, but she has a chance to make up in the match play, where she meets Shiraz Singh. The leading pairings for the match play first round include Seher Atwal vs Gemma Glews of England; Tvesa Malik v Shagun Narain; and Sifat Sagoo vs Liana Durisic. Thirty six players qualified from among the 62 starters four were eliminated after the first round for the Match play.

The first match starts at 8.15 am and will feature Nur Durriah Damian against Gurjot Badwal. The final is slated for Sunday.