Former top pro Shrestha opens up three-stroke lead

Kathmandu, March 3

Former top pro Shivaram Shrestha carded four-under 64 to take threestroke lead over Sukra Bahadur Rai after the second round of the Pilot Golfers NPGA Classic here at the Royal Nepal Golf Club today.

Playing at the par-68 RNGC course on the second day, Shrestha posted nine-under 131 after he had carded five-under 67 at the Gokarna Golf Course to share the lead with Rai. The Dharan pro, Rai fell to second at six-under 134 after he carded one-under 67. Further two strokes behind was amateur Subash Tamang, who shot two-under 66.

Shrestha began the day with a birdie and added two more on the fourth and fifth holes to take the turn at three-under 31. He carded four more birdies on the back nine saving shots on the 10th, 11th, 13th and 18th holes. But a double bogey on the 14th after dropping a shot on the 12th hole took him to one-under 33 on the latter half.

Rai — who started the round with a birdie 3 saved pars on the next 12 holes before saving a shot on the 13th. He then faced the lone bogey of the day on the 14th hole.

The 13th South Asian Games double gold medallist, amateur Tamang bounced back strongly on the back nine after playing one-over 35 on the first half. He faced a bogey on the sixth before carding birdies on the 13th, 14th and 17th holes.

Nepal No 1 Bhuwan Nagarkoti and Dinesh Prajapati shared the fourth position at three-under 137 after both golfers carded one-under 67, while three pros — Bal Bhadra Rai (66), Rabi Khadka (68) and Rame Magar (69) were tied for sixth at 138.

Jayaram Shresta (66) and Sanjay Lama (70) shared the ninth position at 141, whereas Rajendra Shrestha Pradhan (70) was 11th at 143.

Deepak Acharya (71) and Tanka Bahadur Karki (72) shared the 12th position at 145. Cut was applied at 13- over 153 with 25 pros and six amateurs making it to the final round of the fourth event under the 2019-20 season of the Surya Nepal Golf Tour.