Superb Chikka shoots into lead

The all-India Junior and Amateur champion, who is using this event as a tune-up to two amateur meets in June, proved why he is the overwhelming favourite to go the distance, shooting a brilliant three-under 69 in Category A on a humid day at the Karnataka Golf Association. Bangalore Golf Club’s Rahul Ravi also impressed with a fine 70 to lie second while local lad and birthday boy Syed Saqib Ahmed shot a topsy-turvy 72 to share the third spot with Harjot Singh Soni.

Bangaloreans called the shots in the girls’ section too, with the young and talented Aditi Ashok of BGC firing a 75 to hit the front in Category A and B combined. KGA’s Tvesa Malik is two strokes behind in second place while Amrita Sarna is third at 80.

Chikk-arangappa, who in February successfully retained the all-India amateur championship in stunning fashion at the very same course, kick-started his campaign in the best manner possible, picking up a stroke right away on the par-4 first. His joy was shortlived when he bogeyed the fourth, but he bounced back immediately with a birdie on the fifth.

After taking the turn at the one-under, the teenager dropped a shot on the 11th, picked up a shot each on the 12th and 13th before negating the advantage somewhat with a bogey on the par-5 14th. Chikkarangappa, however, didn’t allow the fluctuating fortunes to distract him, capping the day in wonderful fashion by firing birdies on the 15th and 18th.

In contrast, Rahul played out a fairly stable round, sinking four birdies as against two bogeys, three of those birdies coming on the inward journey.

Leading scores (after 18 holes):
Boys: Category A&B: 69: S Chikkarangappa; 70: Rahul Ravi; 72: Harjot Singh Soni, Syed Saqib Ahmed; 73: Yashas Chandra; 75: Piyush Sangwan; 76: Kushal Singh, Trishul Chinnappa; 77: Rohan Sharma, Sumeir Malhotra, Abhishek Kuhar, Shiv Srinivasan.
Category B: 75: Piyush Sangwan; 77: Shiv Srinivasan; 79: Prakhar Asawa; 80: Feroz Singh Garewal, Nishant Bais; 81: Tae Seung Kim, Arrush Ahuja, Viraj Madappa.
Category C: 80: Tanvir Khalon; 83: Arjun Puri; 84: Karan Sharma; 85: Karandeep Kochar; 86: Sarthak Kohli, K Sidharth, Karthik Sharma.
Girls: Category A&B: 75: Aditi Ashok; 77: Tvesa Malik; 80: Amrita Sarna; 82: Ridhima Dilawari; 83: Millie Saroha.
Category B: 75: Aditi Ashok; 82: Rishima Dilawari; 94: Gurjot Badwal.
Category C: 91: Arushi Pandey; 93: Suchitra Ramesh; 97: Riya Ahuja, Shruti Shenoy.

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