Ahmedabad: Deepinder Singh Kullar of the DLF Golf & Country Club, Gurugram and Lucknow’s Vijay Kumar surged ahead by two shots in round two of the PGTI’s Final Qualifying Stage for the 2020 season being held at the Kensville Golf & Country Club near Ahmedabad.
The 38-year-old Deepinder (71-73) and the seasoned 51-year-old Vijay (72-72), a former Indian Open champion, were tied for the lead with identical totals of even-par-144.
Ten players were bunched together in tied third at two-over-146 including round one joint leaders Kartik Sharma (76) of Gurugram and Delhi’s Pawan Verma (76).
The halfway cut fell at 11-over-155 on a windy day. Eighty players made the cut.
Deepinder Singh Kullar, lying overnight tied third and one off the lead, made four birdies and five bogeys during his round. Kullar’s excellent iron-play set up two tap-in birdies for him. He came within a whisker of making a hole-in-one on the 11th. Deepinder also sank two long birdie putts.
Kullar said, “I’m quite pleased with my effort taking into account the tough conditions today as it was extremely windy. It was tough to get the ball near the pins. So, it was all about making up and downs and scrambling.
“I missed quite a few up and downs but my iron hitting was good and I sank a couple of long putts as well. The highlight of my round was my seven-iron tee shot on the par-3 11th that stopped an inch from the hole, I nearly had a hole-in-one there.
“Last season I suffered two injuries that affected my performance and saw me finish outside the top-60 of the PGTI Order of Merit. First, I had a shoulder injury which put a lot of pressure on my right arm which in turn resulted in a tennis elbow. I’ve almost recovered fully from my injuries and am therefore looking at a far better performance this year,” added Deepinder, who is also one of the leading coaches in the Delhi-NCR region.
Vijay Kumar, lying overnight tied fifth and two off the lead, made two birdies and two bogeys on Wednesday and thus moved up four spots.
At the end of round four on Friday, the top 38 players will earn full cards for the 2020 TATA Steel PGTI season.