Shubhankar shares opening honours with Jazz #BBO

Wed 01 Feb 2017

Shubhankar shares opening honours with Jazz #BBO

[button link="" size="small" target="_blank" icon="cog" color="blue, alternative-1" ]What They Said[/button][button link="" size="small" target="_blank" icon="cog" color="blue, alternative-1" ]Round 1 results[/button][button link="" size="small" target="_blank" icon="cog" color="blue, alternative-1" ]Tee Times-Round 2[/button][button link="" size="small" target="_blank" icon="cog" color="blue, alternative-1" ]Photos[/button]
Shubhankar Sharma of India Shubhankar Sharma of India
Dhaka, February 1: Young Indian Shubhankar Sharma rode on his recent run of good form to sign for a superb seven-under-par 64, grabbing a share of the opening round lead with Jazz Janewattananond of Thailand at the Bashundhara Bangladesh Open on Wednesday.
The 20-year-old Indian, who finished third on his own in the last edition, fired nine birdies against two bogeys to lead by two shots alongside 21-year-old Jazz, who was equally impressive with one eagle and six birdies against a bogey, at the Kurmitola Golf Club.
Panuphol Pittayarat of Thailand carded a 66 to sit in third place while Singapore’s Koh Deng Shan lurks three shots off the pace in fourth following a 67 at the US$300,000 event, which is the third leg of the Asian Tour schedule this season.
Buoyed by a tied-11th and a tied-ninth finishes in Singapore and Myanmar respectively over the last two weeks, Shubhankar, placed 10th on the current Order of Merit, hopes to ride high on his confidence and push for a breakthrough win this week.
Jazz, playing in his first Asian Tour event this season, was thrilled to get off to a flying start. He is seeking a good result this week to redeem himself from the disappointment of losing his Tour card after finishing 63rd on the Merit rankings last season.
Singapore’s Mardan Mamat, who won the tournament two years ago, returned with a 72 while Indian star Jeev Milkha Singh carded a 74. Local hero Siddikur Rahman, a two-time winner on the Asian Tour, battled to a 71 to tie in 29th position.
Interesting facts of the day:

  • Jazz Janewattananond of Thailand Jazz Janewattananond of Thailand
    Shubhankar’s third place finish in the last edition was his best result on the Asian Tour since joining the play-for-pay ranks in 2013.

  • Shubhankar fired a commanding 10-under-par 62 in the final round of the 2016 Resorts World Manila Masters last November to finish tied-fourth in the event. The result propelled him to 51st on the final Order of Merit, allowing him to keep his card for 2017.

  • Jazz had two chip-ins in the round, one for eagle on seventh and one for birdie on 12. He navigated his way around the course with only 25 putts.

  • Panuphol, nicknamed ‘Coconut’, turned professional at a young age of 14 and has successfully kept his full card every year since breaking through at Qualifying School in 2011.

  • Koh, who is playing on a sponsors’ invite this week, is the mentee of Singaporean veteran Mardan Mamat, who won his fifth Asian Tour title at the inaugural Bashundhara Bangladesh Open in 2015.

Key quotes:
"I have to keep grinding out there. I think that is very crucial. Even if I missed the green, I have to scramble well. I have been putting well. I will keep up the good work." - Shubhankar Sharma

Shubhankar SHARMA (IND) – First Round 64 (-7)
I am very happy with the round. I just hung in there and made all the crucial putts. I hit it pretty close for all the birdies I made today.
Everything was good for me today. The shots that I missed, I didn’t missed by much. It could have been better. I have been playing well. I am just riding on my good form. I was hoping to get a good start to the week and I did.
I just wanted to keep playing the way I have been playing. I am feeling confident with my game but I am not really thinking about winning yet. I am happy with my position right now. I will keep things the same tomorrow.
I will try to play the way I did today. I have to keep grinding out there. I think that is very crucial. Even if I missed the green, I have to scramble well. I have been putting well. I will keep up the good work.
Jazz JANEWATTANANOND (THA) – First Round 64 (-7)
Everything just came together. I didn’t play that great today but somehow I managed to shoot a low score. I didn’t make any big mistakes. I was able to hit most of the fairways.
I found the fairway on seventh, hit a good approach shot to greenside before chipping in for eagle on seventh. It was a fairly easy chip as the distance was not that far. I guess that not only help me but also one of my flight mates. He had a chip-in right on the next hole.
I made another chip-in for birdie on 12 too. That helped a lot in my game today. I didn’t play here last year but I played the tournament two years back. The greens and the fairways are so much better now. The weather is much nicer too. I really enjoyed myself out there.
Panuphol Pittayarat of Thailand Panuphol Pittayarat of Thailand
Panuphol PITTAYARAT (THA) – First Round 66 (-5)
Shooting five-under-par is always good, no matter where. It’s my third time coming back here and I think I like being back here. I played very good today. I struck the ball really well. It was a little wet this morning so I didn’t quite get the distance on my front nine with my approach. But things got better on the back nine. I managed to hole some putts.
I had three birdies in a row from fifth. I make an up-and-down from about 40 yards in the bunker for birdie on fifth and holed a putt from the first cut on sixth before making another up-and-down for birdie on seventh. It was great. I had a chance and I took it.
Nothing much has changed compared to the past two years. I played more conservatively today. I just kept the ball in play and not going for it too much. When I had the chance, I just took it and play safe. I will take the same approach tomorrow. I just have to keep the ball in play.
Koh Deng Shan of Singapore Koh Deng Shan of Singapore
KOH Deng Shan (SGP) – First Round 67 (-4)
I hit the ball really good today. I made some good putts. I sank about three or four 10 to 12 footers. I had eight birdies today which was the most I have ever had in a round.
The best birdie I had was on the fourth. I had a difficult second shot. The pin was on the front left and it was very hard to stop the ball. But I managed to hit it close and tap in for birdie. I double-bogeyed the third hole and I needed to pick myself up. I gained a lot of confidence from there.
The greens are pretty firm. The course is in a good shape. Some holes are pretty tricky, especially on the greens. My caddy reads the line pretty good. I think that’s a bonus for me.
I haven’t been playing well the last few months so it’s good to shoot a good round again. I have been working on my fitness lately. I am glad the efforts are starting to pay off. There is still a lot of golf to go. I will just go out there tomorrow and play the same way I did today. I think the results will come if I can keep to my routines.
Scores after round 1 of the Bashundhara Bangladesh Open 2017 being played at the par 71, 6637 Yards Kurmitola GC course (am - denotes amateur):
66 - Panuphol PITTAYARAT (THA).
67 - KOH Deng Shan (SIN).
68 - Chiragh KUMAR (IND).
69 - Danny MASRIN (INA), Youngjea BYUN (KOR), LIU Yan-wei (CHN), Itthipat BURANATANYARAT (THA), Seunghyun CHOI (KOR), Nicolas PAEZ (USA), Khalin JOSHI (IND), Wolmer MURILLO (VEN), Micah Lauren SHIN (USA).
72 - Sujjan SINGH (IND), Mitchell SLORACH (SIN), Panuwat MUENLEK (THA), Sam CYR (USA), Mardan MAMAT (SIN), Johannes VEERMAN (USA), Rory HIE (INA), OUYANG Zheng (CHN), Sung LEE (KOR), Akbar HOSSAIN (am, BAN), Yikeun CHANG (KOR), Jakiruzzaman JAKIR (BAN), Gunn CHAROENKUL (THA), Tirawat KAEWSIRIBANDIT (THA).
About the Bashundhara Group
The Bashundhara Group was founded in 1987 as a real estate venture before spreading its businesses to manufacturing, industry and trading. It now own 20 enterprises which deal in cement, paper, pulp, tissue paper, steel production and LP gas bottling and distribution. The Group joined forces with the Bangladesh Golf Federation to launch its national Open in 2015.
About the Asian Tour
As the official sanctioning body for professional golf in Asia, the Asian Tour leads the development of golf across the region, enhancing the careers of its members while maintaining a commitment to the integrity of the game. The Asian Tour, through its membership of the International Federation of PGA Tours, is the only recognised pan-Asian professional golf tour in Asia. This unique feature positions the Asian Tour at the pinnacle of professional golf in Asia; providing its events with Official World Ranking status. Tour Partners include ECCO (Official Footwear Sponsor), FENIX XCell (Official Apparel Supplier), Hilton Worldwide (Official Hotel Partner), Titleist (Official Web Partner), Bloomberg TV (Official International Media Sponsor), Bloomberg Businessweek Chinese (Official Business Publication Sponsor) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). Sentosa, Singapore is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.
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