Co Kilkenny, Ireland, 03-07-2021

Bhullar tied 34th, Sharma tied 58th in Ireland; Lahiri placed tied 46th in Detroit

By V Krishnaswamy

Gaganjeet Bhullar pulled in a flawless bogey free round of 4-under 68 to comfortably make the cut at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open in Kilkenny, Ireland. Bhullar, 71-68, is now 5-under 139 and Tied-34th, while his compatriot Shubhankar Sharma, who suffered a quadruple bogey in the first round, managed to recover from that disaster to add 67 to his first round 74 and also make the weekend rounds on the cut line.

Australian Lucas Herbert, 25, continued his charge towards a second European Tour title after he followed his opening 64 with a second round 67 to open up a two-shot lead at 13-under-131 at Mount Juliet Estate.

Bhullar birdied twice on either half of the Mount Juliet course, while Sharma had five birdies and an eagle on Par-5 fifth besides bogeys on ninth and 16th in his 67.

Elsewhere, at the PGA Tour's Rocket Mortgage Classic in Detroit, Anirban Lahiri continued to get his game together steadily even though he was still leaving a lot of shots on the greens, as his second round of 3-under 69 showed. Put alongside his first 1-under 71, Lahiri is now 4-under 140 and Tied-46th as he made the cut comfortably.

Lahiri’s playing partner England’s Tom Lewis and Chilean Joaquin Niemann share the 36-hole lead at 10-under-134.

Lahiri’s highpoint of the day was at the 425-yard par-4 10th, where he reached the green in two and rolled a 37-foot putt for birdie and it seemed to bring a spring in his walk. On the par-4 12th, Lahiri's 162 yard approach to 13 feet set himself up for the birdie on the hole. This moved Lahiri to 2 under for the round.

He two-putted from seven feet for bogey on the par-4 13th. Amidst some par saves and birdie misses, Lahiri turned in 1-under and then had back-to-back birdies on second and third to get to 3-under. That was good enough to make the cut on a day when the wind picked up considerably during the second round with gusts to 25 mph that made the relatively easy course more challenging.

Yet Lahiri, who last won at the 2015 Hero Indian Open on European Tour, would have felt hungry and disappointed as he missed at least three putts inside eight feet. After missing a 7-footer for par on 13th and then an eight-footer for birdie on 16th and again a seven-footer for birdie on 17th. Over the last six holes, he was short with his approaches but managed pars.

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