Dhaka, Bangladesh, 11 May 2018

Sri Lankan Mithun Perera, India’s M Dharma enter final round of AB Bank Bangladesh Open as title contenders

Sri Lankan Mithun Perera emerged as a top title contender in round three of the AB Bank Bangladesh Open after firing a five-under-66 that took his total to 10-under-203. Perera trails the leader, England’s Jack Harrison, by one shot at the US$300,000 Asian Tour event.

India’s M Dharma kept his title aspirations alive with a third round of three-under-68 that placed him tied fourth at eight-under-205.
PGTI member Mithun Perera (70-67-66) overcame an opening bogey with eight birdies but slipped back with two other bogeys in his closing four holes to settle for a 66 and second place. The 31-year-old Perera is now on the threshold of creating history as he looks to become the first Sri Lankan to win on the Asian Tour.

Perera said, “I didn’t finish well, dropped two shots on my last four holes but overall, I had a great round. I made eight birdies after the bogey on first. I played decent golf but missed a couple of putts today. I was happy to put myself in contention for tomorrow.

“I was able to hit it close today. My iron shots were very good. My birdies were from about two to three feet. I three-putted the first hole for bogey and sank a 10-footer on the second for birdie to make it back. That helped me gained some momentum heading into the round.

“It was tough to score today, given the windy conditions. I am happy with where I stand right now. There’s still one more day to go. I will try and beat the golf course tomorrow. I tell myself I am playing against myself and against the golf course, not the players.

“The aim is to shoot an under-par round tomorrow. We will see how it goes.”

M Dharma (66-71-68), who is already set to achieve his best finish on the Asian Tour, emerged as the highest-placed Indian in the field on Friday after making six birdies and three bogeys in round three.

Dharma said, “I started with a bogey on the first but bounced back immediately with a birdie on second. I made a few good birdies to turn in 32 but my back nine was really shaky. I am still hitting the ball good today, just made a few bad shots on my back nine.

“It was windy out there and not easy to play at all. I made a long putt from about 20 feet for birdie on seventh. That was my highlight today. I managed to hit it close for the other birdies. I am very happy with how I have played so far.

“I don’t want to have any expectations for the final round tomorrow. I just want to play my game. If I tell myself I have to shoot a certain number, I will be stressed. I just want to play my best and whatever happens, happens.”

Local hope Zamal Hossain Mollah (72), who held a share of the halfway lead, slipped four shots off the pace to tied seventh place along with Divyanshu Bajaj of India (70) at seven-under-206. Zamal remains the highest-ranked Bangladeshi player at the end of round three.

Honey Baisoya, placed ninth at six-under-207, and Rashid Khan occupying tied 10th at five-under-208, made it four Indians in the top-10 on day three.

Source: Asian Tour

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