Khadka, Shrestha share lead on Day I

Kathmandu, May 13:

Rabi Khadka and Shiva Ram Shrestha shared the opening day lead at the Central Open Golf Tournament at the Le Meridien Gokarna Forest Golf Resort and Spa today.

Khadka and Shrestha were tied for the lead after carding three under 69. One stroke behind was the 2007 Surya Nepal Masters champion Deepak Thapa Magar at two under 70. Deepak Neupane and Toran Shahi are tied for the fifth at 74.

Khadka started the day with par on the first six holes, birdied the seventh to finish the front nine with two more pars for a total of one under 35. On the back nine he had three birdies on Hole No 10, 12 and 18 but dropped a shot on the par 4, 14th.

Shrestha birdied the 2nd,3rd, 4th,7th and 8th holes without dropping a shot for a 31 on the front nine. On the back nine, Shrestha birdied the 11th and was well on course of huge total but dropped shots on 14th, 17th and 18th that forced him to share the lead with Khadka.

Toran Shahi started with a birdie, made bogey on the second and then got birdies on next two holes. He also dropped shots on Hole No 6, 7 and 8 for a 37 on the front nine. On the back nine he matched the front nine score with two bogeys and a birdie.

Neupane also started with a birdie but had bogeys on the 4th, 5th and 8th before hitting birdies on 6th and 9th for a even par 36. On the return, he bogeyed Hole No 14,15 and 16 before sinking a birdie on the 18th. Ram Krishna Shrestha was sixth with the score of three over 75. Gokarna Pro Deepak Acharya is joint seventh along with Ram Thapa and Sanjay Lama at four over 76. Acharya started with two pars before hitting his drive out of bounds on par-5,third where he lost two shots and dropped another shot on the eighth for a total of 39 on the front nine. His lone birdie came on the last hole for a total of 76. CB Bhandari and Radheshyam Thapa are tied for 10th at 77.

Among the amateurs Rupak Acharya and Tashi Ghale are atop the standings at two over 74. Krishna Hari Mizar was next with 78 while Dhana Thapa and Jaya Ram Shrestha are tied for the fourth at 80.

Ghale had birdies on Hole No 3,4,12 but bogeyed on the eighth ,ninth,13th. He also double bogeyed on 17th hole. Rupak made a birdie on the fifth and dropped a shot on the eighth for even par 36 on the front nine. Bogeys on last two holes made him share the lead in the first round.

In all, 22 pros and 16 amateurs are taking part in the event.