Karandeep Kochhar shoots 67 to get tied third in Taipei

LINKOU (Chinese Taipei): India Karandeep Kochhar birdied each of the four Par-5 to open its campaign in the Yeangder TPC With a solid five under 67 he placed it in third place after a first-round rain on Thursday.

Chandigarh, 20, was among the five players who completed their rounds with less than five.

Game partners Wang Wei-hsuan and Lien Lu-sen of Chinese Taipei are in six under par through 13 holes, while compatriot Lee Chieh-po follows the duo for two shots after nine.

Wang, 19, has not yet completed his round, but has already matched the Tour record for most birdies made at the start of the round with his seven birdies in a row.

Long-standing Karandeep, who became a professional at age 17, won a professional title while he was an amateur, but did not win after moving into the paid ranks.

He started from the last nine and had three birdies against a bogey and in the last nine he had two birdies, both in Par-5 and then closed the day with a birdie in Par-4 ninth.

Among other Indians, who had finished playing, Abhijit Chadha and S Chikkarangappa shot two below 70 each, while 2017 winner Ajeetesh Sandhu started with one below 71, just like Aman Raj.

Jeev Milkha Singh shooting even par 72.

Other Indians who have not yet completed their rounds are Shiv Kapur , Chiragh Kumar, Khalin Joshi, Viraj Madappa and Aadil Bedi.

Kochhar, whose best result this season has been T-12 in Bangladesh, had its round interrupted twice by rain and winds.

It was a difficult day. My round was suspended twice. I'm lucky to finish before they honked again. The second time we went out, the winds blew strongly in the last three holes. But I think I endured very well. I got really good and I think that was the key, he said.

The greens are quite complicated here. They are not easy to read. In general, my game is in good shape. I am happy with the way I played. I made a good up and down for birdie in the fourth hole. My second shot went into the bunker but I hit it 10 feet from there and did the putt.

I really wanted to finish the round when I played the last holes. I have been awake since 4 am and it has been a long day. It's been a while since I played well.

Kochhar has mixed memories of his last visit here.

I played here last year too. Asian tour It was very nice to invite me this year. I remember playing in similar conditions last year too. I shot a seven in the first round and then a six in the second round to make the cut and finally finished in the top 15, he said.

The Korean Doyeob Mun sank a spectacular ace on the way to a first five under par 67 to get a share of the clubhouse leadership in a rain stroke on Thursday.

Mun overcame the eighth par three hole with an iron of eight from 169 yards. He was in five below with his countrymen Minchel Choi and Yikeun Chang, Lin Wen-tang and Kochhar.

The quintet is among the 72 players in the morning session who completed their initial rounds, where the game stopped three times during the day due to bad weather, which caused a total delay of four hours.

The game was abandoned later in the day at 6.10 pm local time due to dim light.

The 72 players in the afternoon session will resume their round at 7:00 a.m. on Friday and the second round will begin at 8.50 a.m.