Indian golfer, SSP Chawrasia on Thursday, carded a solid four-under 68 on the back of five birdies to be placed fifth at the Oman Open.
The Indian had finished his two Asian Tour starts in Hong Kong and Singapore in January tied-22 and tied-32, respectively. He also finished at the fourth position at the European Tour Qualifying School. He, however, didn’t participate in any one of the three events in the Middle East swing.
Chawrasia, who is also a four-time winner on European Tour and two-time winner of the Hero Indian Open, began from the back nine with two birdies on the par-5 12th and par-5 16th that followed to turn in two-under.
On the second hole, he added a third birdie but dropped a shot on fourth. He also added birdies on sixth and eighth holes to finish at four-under.
His fellow countrymen, Shubhankar Sharma and Gaganjeet Bhullar had rough starts. They carded two-over 74 each. For them to make the cut, they will need a low second-round score, which is looking unlikely.
Italian Guido Migliozzi is leading with one shot over Brandon Stone, Rasmus Hojgaard, and Lee Taehee, who carded 67 each after having a bogey-free six-under 66.
The scoreboard shows that Chawrasia and six other players are at four-under. The other players include the winner of Indian Open champion Stephen Gallacher, Adrian Otaegui, Zander Lombard, Andy Sullivan, Victor Dubuisson, Ross Fisher, and George Coetzee.
Migliozzi, who six birdies on day one moved him to six under, had missed his first three cuts of the 2020 campaign.
Having missed four cuts in a row, Hojgaard, who won the Mauritius Open, went bogey-free in the afternoon meet up with Stone at five under.
In a related development, the Italian golfers that were quarantined over the fear of infection of the deadly coronavirus have been reinstated.
The virus had hit Italy, leaving five people dead. Edoardo Molinari and Lorenzo Gagli, who were initially quarantined later, got the all-clear to compete in the competition.
They were forced to withdraw from the tournament after Gagli had suffered flu-like symptoms, and Molinari was his roommate. They were initially placed in isolation as a precautionary measure.
After the Omani Ministry of Health tested Gagli, and it turned out negative, they were allowed to return to the course.
Written by: Oladipupo Mojeed