Rai takes first-day lead
Kathmandu, January 9:
Mani Rai carded one-under 71 to take a one-shot lead over Deepak Acharya on the first day of the Kailash Tea Open Golf Tournament here at the Gokarna Forest Golf Resort and Spa today.
Deepak Thapa Magar was third at even par 72, one stroke less than Pashupati Sharma. Shiva Ram Shrestha and Rupak Acharya, who carded one over 73 each, lead the pack of 19 amateurs, while Ram Krishna Shrestha was third with two over 74.
Sabin Sapkota, who had a round of two under in the first nine, finished the day at two over 74 and was fifth, while Deepak Neupane and Toran Shahi carded four over 76 apiece for the joint sixth position. Radhe Shyam Thapa, Sachin Bhattarai and Rajan Thapa were behind with 77 each.
Rai had birdies at the par-4 holes — first and sixth — and dropped a shot at Par-5 seventh for one-under 35 in the front nine. He had an eagle at the par-5 12th, but a double bogey at par-5 15th brought him at the level. He managed a birdie at the next hole for one-under 35 and a total of two under.
After dropping a shot at the par-4 second, Acharya managed a birdie at the third, but bogeys at Hole Nos 4 and 7 saw him finish the first nine at two over 38. He came back strongly in the back nine and managed a three-under 33, thanks to birdies at Hole Nos 11, 14 and 16. Sapkota had a dream start with three birdies and a bogey for a two-under 34 in the first nine, but had a disastrous back nine — three bogeys and a double bogey with a lone birdie — that pushed him back to fifth.
Scores after 18 holes — Pros: 70 - Mani Rai, 71 - Deepak Acharya, 72- Deepak Thapa Magar, 73 - Pashupati Sharma, 74 - Sabin Sapkota, 76 - Deepak Neupane, Toran Shahi, 77 - Radheshyam Thapa, Sachin Bhattarai, Rajan Thapa, 79 - Ramesh Nagarkoti, 80 - Sukra Raj Limbu, 82 - Ram Thapa, Sanjay Lama, 84 - C B Bhandari, 89 - Suman Sapkota, 90 - Bhimsen Karki.
Amateurs: 73 - Shiva Ram Shrestha, Rupak Acharya; 74 - Ram Krishna Shrestha, 78 - Rabi Khadka, 80 - Yelamber Adhikari, Tashi Ghale, Juti Tham, 82 - Raju Shrestha, Surya Sharma, 84 - Deepak Baral, 85 - Rajendra Phuyal, Jaya Ram, 86 - A T Sherpa, 90 - Gopal Chitrakar, Tashi Tsering, 92 - Prakash Neupane, 93 - Balram Thapa, 94 - Shreejay Acharya, 106 - Dinesh Khanal.