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Mauritius, 02 Dec 2017

Arjun Atwal ends penultimate round of AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open as joint leader, keeps alive hopes of a record ninth Asian Tour title

Shiv Kapur in tied 12th

Arjun Atwal of India battled to a three-under-par 68 in swirling wind to tie for the third round lead with Louis De Jager of South Africa at the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open on Saturday.
 
Atwal, a former Asian Tour number one, enjoyed a solid front nine 32 before adding his fifth birdie on hole 14. He was ahead by one-shot heading into 18 but missed a four-foot par putt to finish on 13-under-par 200 at the Heritage Golf Club. It was his first three-putt in the tournament.
 
De Jager produced a flawless 67 to charge into contention at the €1million (approximately US$1.07 million) event sanctioned by the Asian Tour, European Tour and Sunshine Tour.
 
Filipino Miguel Tabuena and South African Dylan Frittelli were one shot back of the leaders in tied third place.

Atwal birdied the par-five seventh hole for the third straight day. He is also four-under on the par-five 14th hole where he eagled on the first day and birdied in round two and three.

Arjun, Captain of Team Asia at the EurAsia Cup 2018, will draw confidence from the fact that out of his eight Asian Tour victories, he has won five when he has led or co-led heading into the final round.
 
Atwal will now be searching for a ninth Asian Tour title, an Indian record, and his first since 2014. He is also chasing his fourth European Tour title. Jeev Milkha Singh and SSP Chawrasia are the only two Indians to have so far bagged four wins on the European Tour.

Arjun said, “I played solid all day except for a blip on the last hole which won’t bother me. It did play harder today. It was definitely blowing harder out of the three days.

“The driving was difficult because we had crosswinds on most holes but I drove it on most days pretty good. The 18th was the only missed drive but other than that I drove it pretty much where I was looking and I’m very pleased with that.
 
“The officials got it right with the green speeds. If it was any faster, the ball would move especially in the gusty conditions. I’m really looking forward to Sunday. With the way I’m playing, I think I have a good shot at it.
 
“I’m really calm here but a bit tired. You mix those two together and I think I’ll be okay on Sunday.”

Shiv Kapur made a gain of 13 spots as he climbed to tied 12th at seven-under-206 after a third round of 68.

Gaganjeet Bhullar’s round of 67 placed him tied 24th at five-under-208.

SSP Chawrasia dropped 15 places to tied 28th after returning a 73 that took his score to four-under-209.

Shubhankar Sharma was tied 43rd at two-under-211.
 
Source: Asian Tour


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