India’s Udayan Mane and former PGA Tour player Miguel Carballo of Argentina, shared top honours with identical rounds of 63 (7-under par), at the end of round one of the inaugural Louis Philippe Cup 2018, a USD 75000 Asian Development Tour (ADT) and Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI) co-sanctioned event, which got underway in Bengaluru’s Prestige Golfshire Club course on Tuesday.
In overcast and windy conditions interrupted by light drizzles, the Ahmedabad based Mane, a regular winner on the PGTI tour over the last couple of years, executed a stellar bogey-free round sinking seven birdies on the second, fourth, seventh, ninth, 11th, 12thand 13thholes respectively. Argentine Carballo on the other hand, sank eight birdies on the day but his sole bogey on the tricky hole 16, meant he lost the chance to take an outright lead. Carballo, playing his first season in Asia, is in red-hot form registering 5 top 10 finishes this year on the ADT already in six tournaments played.
Post completion of his 18 holes, Udayan Mane said, “I played a bogey-free round, but the course was very challenging and for once not to be taken for granted. I am glad to be in the joint lead but we still have three more days to go. The plan forward is to execute as per the plans as the course is set up in such a way that there isn’t any margin for errors.”
Miguel Carballo, also a former two-time winner on the Web.com Tour and joint leader, said, “ I am happy to have played a good round today. The conditions were challenging and the course was playing very fast but I am glad I stuck to my plan and didn’t make many errors except the one bogey that happened to me on the 16thhole.”
The leaders were closely followed in tied third place by the trio of Sam Gillis of the United States of America (USA) and India’s Divyanshu Bajaj and Om Prakash Chouhan, who returned cards of 5-under on the day.
“ I played pretty well today and I am happy that I kept the ball on the front and didn’t miss my line. The course is tricky and the weather can be very unpredictable here,” said Sam Gillis after his first round.
“ I had a good day today and I hit the ball well. The weather was definitely challenging both because of the wind and then the rains, but that’s something that this course is known for. The 16thhole is definitely a tricky hole specially post its conversion to a Par 4 instead of a Par 5. The plan going forward is to be on point and keep my tee game on top,” said Divyanshu post his round.
Trailing the above troika in tied sixth position was the local pair of Khalin Joshi, currently placed 18th on the Asian Tour Habitat for Humanity Order of Merit rankings and Harendra Gupta with returns of 4-under par and three shots behind the leaders.
Among pre-tournament favourites, Australian Marcus Both, a three-time winner on the Asian Tour, secured a place just outside the top 10, his round of 2-under putting him into tied 12thposition on the leaderboard. Seasoned Indian pro Rahil Gangjee, a two-time winner on the Asian Tour shot a card of 1-under par to lie in tied 18thspot. Asian Games bound 17-year old Aadil Bedi and two-time Asian Tour winner Rashid Khan of India, also had fair returns of even par, giving them a share of 28thspot with 12 others.
The Louis Philippe Cup 2018 has seen over 130 golfers, including 60 foreign golfers from 20 different countries tee-off at the Prestige Golfshire. Wednesday will see the halfway cut being taken where only the top 60 golfers plus ties will make it through to the final two days for a shot at the championship.