Delhi-based teenager Arjun Prasad and Sri Lanka’s Mithun Perera maintained their place atop the leaderboard in round two of the QA InfoTech Open 2018 at the Noida Golf Course on Wednesday.
Both Prasad and Perera, who shot scores of three-under-69 to be part of the five-way lead on day one of the Rs. 50 lakh event, once again came up with matching scores of one-under-71 on day two to stay in the lead with totals of four-under-140.
Panchkula’s Angad Cheema (70) and Sri Lankan Anura Rohana (71) were one shot behind the leaders in tied third.
Indian star Jeev Milkha Singh ended the day in tied 17th with a total of one-over-145 after he shot a score of two-over-74 in round two.
The cut went at five-over-149. Fifty-nine professionals and one amateur made the cut.
Arjun Prasad (69-71), playing only his second season as a professional, had a steady start as he made pars on the first six holes. Prasad, who became the youngest Indian to earn an Asian Tour card at age 17 in early 2017, made a terrific par save with a chip-in on the fourth.
The 19-year-old Arjun currently in 22nd place on the PGTI Order of Merit then followed up his birdie on the seventh with a double-bogey on the next to make the turn at one-over. The man with three top-10s on the PGTI this year went on to add three birdies and a bogey on the back nine to end up with a 71.
Prasad said, “My ball-striking has been outstanding so far this week. I’ve also converted some crucial putts over the first two days. I played the par-5s particularly well yesterday making birdies on three of them.
“Today it was windier so it was all about keeping it in play which I managed to do well. My best shot was the approach from 235 yards on the par-5 14th which landed 10 feet short of the green and rolled on to the putting surface to set up a 20-feet two-putt for birdie.
“I grew up playing junior and amateur golf along with Karandeep Kochhar and Viraj Madappa. The professional wins achieved by these two good friends of mine have really motivated me to raise my game. Having seen them win events, I believe I too can win at the highest level.”
Mithun Perera (69-71) mixed four birdies with three bogeys during his round of 71. Perera landed it within five feet on three occasions. Mithun’s best shot of the day was his third shot from 75 yards out on the par-5 14th which he almost holed.
Angad Cheema was four-under for the day through 14 holes and was looking good for the sole lead. However, his two bogeys on the last four holes pushed him back to tied third at three-under-141. Anura Rohana was also tied for third.
There was a four-way tie in fifth place at two-under-142 between overnight joint leader Chiragh Kumar (73) of Delhi, C Muniyappa (70) of Bengaluru, Bangladesh’s Md Zamal Hossain Mollah (68) and Noida’s Gaurav Pratap Singh (71).
Chandigarh’s Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, who finished fourth in Jaipur last week, was the only amateur to make the cut. He was placed tied 17th at one-over-145.