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Saaniya Sharma leads in Hero women's golf

Saaniya Sharma Pune, March 3 (IANS) Chandigarh's Saaniya Sharma played an even par round of 71 in difficult conditions at the Poona Club Golf ...

Saaniya Sharma

Pune, March 3 (IANS)

Chandigarh's Saaniya Sharma played an even par round of 71 in difficult conditions at the Poona Club Golf Course to grab an early lead in the Rs.5 lakh seventh leg of the Hero Women's Professional Golf Tour here on Tuesday. Following Saaniya is Kiran Matharu in second place with a score of 1 over 72 after the first round. The day's major highlight was the season's first hole-in-one by Mehar Atwal on the 13th.

Saaniya started on a scratchy note, carding a double bogey on the first hole along with bogeys on the third, fifth and seventh. Her lone respite in the front nine was a birdie on the sixth. However, she made a brilliant comeback on her bogey-free back nine, firing four consecutive birdies on the 10th, 12th, 13th and 14th.

Carding an even par score of 71, Saaniya currently leads the field with a one stroke edge over Indian origin English golfer Kiran. Kiran carded 1 over 72 which included two birdies on the sixth and 11th. She carded three bogeys on the first, third and ninth to be second.

Kolkata's Smriti Mehra and Delhi's Vani Kapoor are tied third with identical scores of 2 over 73. Smriti did not have the best of starts as she carded two consecutive bogeys on the first and second. She carded two more bogeys on the sixth and 10th along with birdies on the seventh and 14th.

Order of Merit leader Vani carded three birdies on the eighth, 10th and 13th and bogeys on the ninth, 17th and 18th. A double bogey on the fourth added to her woes.

Bengaluru's Sharmila Nicollet and Kolkata's Neha Tripathi are tied fifth with scores of 3 over 74.

Sharmila had a bogey free front nine that included two birdies on the seventh and eighth. It was her back nine which let her down as she carded three bogies on the 12th, 15th and 18th along with a double bogey on the 14th hole.

Neha carded three birdies on the sixth, 13th and 18th. However, four bogeys on the first, second, fifth and 17th along with a double bogey on the 11th spoilt her score. Local girl Shweta Galande and Jaipur's Pallavi Jain are tied seventh with scores of 5 over 76.

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