Bangladesh Open: R Murthy, Mollah in joint lead

Dhaka: R Murthy of Bangalore and Bangladesh’s Md Zamal Hossain Mollah are in the joint lead after round three of the American Express Bangladesh Open 2012. The two golfers have an identical total of eight under 208. While Murthy shot a three under 69 on Thursday, Zamal came up with an even par 72. Bangladesh’s top golfer Md Siddikur Rahman is one stroke off the lead in third place.

R Murthy (73-66-69) had a profitable front-nine in round three as he picked up birdies on the third, fifth and seventh to make the turn at three under. Murthy missed an eagle on the fifth as his chip shot from
the edge of the green lipped out. The 34-year-old made an incredible recovery on the seventh after a poor tee shot. He hit his third shot (four-iron) within five feet of the hole to set up a birdie on the

Murthy, who is yet to win his first professional title, dropped his first bogey of the day on the 13th but soon made up for it with a birdie on the 16th. Murthy’s magnificent tee shot on the 16th almost earned him a hole-in-one as the ball landed a mere one foot from the pin. The Bangalorean thus ended the day with a creditable 69.

“I hit my irons to perfection today and I chipped well. I had a great front-nine, however I was not very pleased with my effort on the back-nine. I missed quite a few putts on the back-nine today,” said

He added, “I don’t have any targets for the final round but I’ll try to play freely and with a relaxed mind. This is the first event of the season and I want to grab my opportunities here in order to begin the
season on a positive note. I know the competition will be tough on the final day as two of Bangladesh’s best professionals – Md Siddikur Rahman and Md Zamal Hossain Mollah – are also right up there on the

Md Zamal Hossain Mollah (71-65-72) continues to be one of the top contenders for the title as he is the joint leader along with Murthy after the penultimate round. Zamal, the 2009 Bangladesh Open champion,
conceded his overnight three-stroke lead on Thursday after he fired an even par 72 that featured four birdies, two bogeys and a double bogey.

Md Siddikur Rahman (66-73-70) is breathing down the neck of the two joint leaders with a total of seven under 209. Siddikur, the 2010 Bangladesh Open champion, carded a 70 in round three that included an
eagle, four birdies and four bogeys. Siddikur chipped-in from the bunker for eagle on the 14th.

Vikrant Chopra of Delhi and Chandigarh’s Abhijit Singh Chadha share fourth place at six under 210.