Golf: Kaul powers into five-shot lead at MBCO

Kshitij Naveed Kaul opened up a five-shot lead with a 5-under 67 in round three of the Mujib Borsho Chattogram Open in Chittagong on Friday

Golf: Kaul powers into five-shot lead at MBCO
Two-time PGTI winner Kshitij Naveed Kaul in action at Chittagong on Friday. Image courtesy PGTI.

KOLKATA: Kshitij Naveed Kaul opened up a five-shot lead with a 5-under 67 in round three of the Mujib Borsho Chattogram Open in Chittagong on Friday.

Kaul (71-63-67), who posted an event-best 63 in round two, made further gains on the day with seven birdies and two bogeys to total 15-under 201 at the Rs 50 lakh event.

Former Panasonic Open India winner Chiragh Kumar (71-69-66) struck a 66 to move up five places into joint second on 10-under 206, the PGTI said.

Two others alongside Chiragh were the Bangladesh duo of Md Siddikur Rahman (71-66-69), who gained two spots, and overnight leader Md Akbar Hossain (67-66-73).

Two-time PGTI winner Kaul, who was one off the lead after round two, had a quiet start on Friday with five pars and a bogey in the first six holes.

Kaul, fresh from a top-10 in Ahmedabad last week, got his round going with a birdie on seven thanks to a precise tee shot and a 10-foot conversion.


He then came up with a flurry of good chip-putts for birdies on eight, 10, 11 and pars on 12 and 13.

The 21-year-old Kaul’s hitting off the tee and accurate approach shots earned him three more birdies on 14, 17 and 18 in exchange for a bogey on 15 as he emerged as the top contender for the title.

Kshitij said later, “Even though I’ve been striking it well recently, today it was my chipping and putting that stood out.

“All those up and downs from the eighth onwards were crucial to my round today.

“At this course, you get into a lot of situations where chip-putts need to be made, so either your chipping or putting has to be excellent on the given day.”

Asian Tour winner Chiragh Kumar, T7 overnight, had an early bogey but rallied with an eagle on four where he had a great tee shot and second shot to leave himself a six-foot conversion.

Chiragh’s eagle gave him the much-needed momentum shift and helped him add five more birdies thereafter at the Bhatiary Golf & Country Club.

Chiragh, a former PGTI Order of Merit champion, said, “I didn’t hit it great today but managed to keep the round together.


“I hit some good shots but the bad ones were totally out of position so had to scramble my way out of the round. But I’m quite pleased with today’s effort.

“The eagle on four was crucial as it moved me from over-par to under-par for the day and that just got me in a positive frame of mind and got my round going.”

Two-time Asian Tour winner and Bangladesh’s premier golfer Siddikur (T4 overnight) shot a 69 featuring six birdies and three bogeys.

Akbar, leader for the first two days, slipped one spot to T2 as a result of his 1-over 73.

India’s Divesh Rana, one of only five players to shoot three sub-par rounds so far this week, returned a 69 to occupy fifth place on 9-under 207.

Bangladesh’s Md Zamal Hossain Mollah fired the day’s best of 65 to be T8 on 7-under 209.