Nepal No 1 golfer Rai takes one-shot lead over Karki

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Kathmandu, December 3

Nepal No 1 golfer Sukra Bahadur Rai and Tanka Bahadur Karki opened the 13th South Asian Games campaign with under-par rounds here at the Gokarna Forest Golf Resort today.

Rai carded four-under 68 to take one-shot lead over fellow Nepali golfer Karki, who fired eight birdies on his way to scoring three-under 69. Mohammad Somrat of Bangladesh was third at two-under 70, while Subash Tamang of Nepal and N Ranga of Sri Lanka carded one-under 71 each.

Nepal’s Niraj Tamang and MU Chandra Parera of Sri Lanka were next at even-par 72.

Rai began the day with a birdie and added three more on the third, fifth and seventh holes before taking the turn at four-under 32. He recovered well to finish the back nine at even-par 36. Rai carded a birdie on the 11th before facing a double bogey on the next hole.

He dropped a shot in 15th hole before bouncing back with two straight birdies on the last two holes to keep the lead.

Karki carded one-under 35 on the front nine before playing two-under 34 on the latter half. Karki made a bright start carding four birdies on the second, third, fifth and sixth but he dropped a shot on the eighth before facing a double bogey on the ninth hole. On the back nine, Karki carded four more birdies on the 11th, 12th, 14h and 18th holes but he dropped shots on the 10th and 13th holes.

Nepal also led the men’s team event with the score of eight-under 208, while Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are joint second at three-over 219.

The best three scores among four players in the team were added to decide the team score. A total of 13 players — four each from Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka and one from Bhutan — are taking part in men’s section.

In women’s section, Sri Lanka’s Grace Yatawara carded three-under 69 to take 11-stroke lead over her teammate Thuhasshini Selvathnam, who shot eight-over 80 in the first round. Nepal’s Kashmira Shah was third at 11- over 83, followed by Bangladesh’s Sonya Akther (84) and Sri Lanka’s Tiniya Minal (85).

In women’s team event, Sri Lanka opened up 22-shot lead over Nepal and Bangladesh.

Sri Lanka posted five-over 149, while Nepal and Bangladesh shared the second position at 27-over 171.

A total of nine golfers, three each from Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, are taking part in the competition.

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Written by Nishant Pokhrel
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