Indian Oil Masters: Vishal shoots 65 to take lead

goflDigboi, Assam: Jaipur’s Vishal Singh returned a splendid six-under-65 at the Digboi Golf Links in round two of the Indian Oil XtraPremium Masters 2012 to go three strokes ahead at the halfway stage of the tournament. Vishal now has a total score of 10-under-132. Md Zamal Hossain Mollah of Bangladesh fired a three-under-68 in round two to be placed second with a total score of seven-under-135.

The cut was declared at 12-over-154. Fifty-one professionals made the cut.

Vishal Singh (67-65), who was overnight tied second, started from the 10th tee on Thursday. The 39-year-old landed it within a few inches of the pin thanks to a magnificent second shot from 120 yards on the 13th to earn his first birdie of the day. Vishal sank putts from eight to 10 feet on the next three holes to produce an amazing run of four successive birdies from the 13th through the 16th. Singh’s approach on the 18th stopped just short of the hole and led to another birdie. Vishal thus made the turn at five under.

A missed opportunity from three feet led to Vishal’s lone bogey of the day on the first. He then went on to pick up two more birdies on the fourth and seventh to close with a strong 65.

“I hit it extremely close today, especially with the wedges. I was luckier with my drives as compared to round one. I found more fairways today and hit perfect approach shots. I’m in a great position at the moment and will strive to convert all my opportunities on the last two days,” said Vishal, who won his last title three years back.

Md Zamal Hossain Mollah’s (67-68) round of 68 on Thursday placed him second, three strokes behind the leader. Mollah’s second round featured four birdies and one bogey.

Mukesh Kumar of Mhow and Harendra Gupta of Chandigarh are tied third at six-under-136.