Kapur starts title defence with solid 66, lies fifth in Pattaya
Pattaya (Thailand), July 26 (PTI) Shiv Kapur began his title defence at the Royal Cup with a 4-under 66 in windy conditions to be placed Tied-5th at the end of the first day, here today.
The 36-year-old, who won three times last year including the Royal Trophy, had six birdies against two bogeys.
Kapur was three shots behind Thailand's Raththee Sirithanakunsak, who signed for a seven-under-par 63. The 28-year-old Thai chasing a breakthrough win on the Asian Tour, returned with a flawless card highlighted by seven birdies to take his place atop the leaderboard.
In-form Justin Harding of South Africa, who won in Indonesia two weeks ago, continued his good run of form by carding a 64 to tie in second place with Japan's Naoto Nakanishi at the USD 500,000 event held at the Phoenix Gold Golf and Country Club.
Among other Indians, Honey Baisoya (67) was Tied-13, while Himmat Rai (68) was T-25 and Jeev Milkha Singh (69) was T-37.
Viraj Madappa (70) was T-47, as was Khalin Joshi. Gaganjeet Bhullar started with 71 to be T-74, as S Chikkarangappa (72) was T-92. Rashid Khan (73) had a roller-coaster of a day, Chiragh Kumar shot 75 and Jyoti Randhawa carded 76.
Kapur birdied first and third to be off to a great start before a bogey on fifth. He got back that shot with a birdie on eighth. On the back nine he bogeyed 12th before finding birdies on 14th, 16th and 18th.
Raththee, a one-time winner on the Asian Development Tour, took advantage of his hot putter by navigating his ways around the greens with only 24 putts for his 63