Kolkata, 22-03-2024

Rasmus Neergaard-Petersen takes two-shot lead

Veer Ahlawat is highest-placed Indian in tied third



Rasmus Neergaard-Petersen will take a two stroke lead into the weekend of the Kolkata Challenge after firing a bogey-free seven under par round of 65 on day two at Royal Calcutta Golf Club.

The Dane carded two birdies on the front nine before adding five more without a blemish on the back nine to move to 11 under par for the week, two shots clear of Scotsman Daniel Young, who himself posted a six under par round of 66 to climb into contention.

The 24-year-old, who currently sits 31st on the season-long Road to Mallorca Rankings, is delighted to be finding form after missing the cut in Delhi last week.

“I’m pleased to be firing on all cylinders here,” he said. “After a decent start this year, I haven’t really got it going so far, especially after missing the cut last week, and I’m excited for what the weekend could hold.

“Any time you can go bogey-free it’s great, especially at a place like this that has high rough. It’s pretty easy to make a lot of bogeys here if you start firing at the pins. On the back nine, all of a sudden, I just started rolling in some putts.”

Neergaard-Petersen closed his round with four birdies in the final five holes to move clear, putting him in a strong position with two rounds to play.

“I hit it close a few times around the turn, but didn’t quite convert, then I got one to drop on hole 14,” he added. “Making four birdies in the last five was great.

“I hit a really good shot under a tree to get on the green on 15, then two putted that for birdie, then I was able to get up and down from the greenside bunker on 16 for another gain.

“On 18, I pulled my tee shot into the left rough which isn’t where you want to be, but I hit an awesome shot from there to about six feet and made the putt, so I’m thrilled to finish that way.”

Duchman Wil Besseling and home favourite Veer Ahlawat share third place on seven under par, four strokes off the lead. Indian trio Dhruv Sheoran, Udayan Mane and Rahil Gangjee, Englishmen John Parry and Andrew Wilson, Swede Charlie Lindh and Jamal Hossain from Bangladesh are one stroke further back in fifth.

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