New Delhi:Local favourite Shiv Kapur wielded a red-hot putter en route to a sizzling nine-under 63 to share the third round lead with Swede rookie Richard Karlberg in the SAIL Open golf tournament in New Delhi on Thursday.
Kapur, who needed only 22 putts, posted a flawless round highlighted by an eagle and seven birdies to join Karlberg, who carded a 68, at the top with a three-day total of 14-under 202 at the Delhi Golf Club.
Unheralded Shamim Khan of India shot a 69 for third place, three back, while eight-time Asian Tour winner Jyoti Randhawa is a further stroke behind following a 68 in the USD 300,000 Asian Tour event celebrating its third edition.
SSP Chowrasia (69), who won his first Asian Tour title on this venue in 2008, is tied fifth with Gaganjeet Bhullar (68) on 208 as the home stars dominated the leaderboard.
Shiv Kapur, who grew up playing at the DGC, turned in 29, thanks to five birdies in his opening six holes.
The 2005 Asian Tour Rookie of the Year, who finished second in the South African Open in December, sweetened his round with an eagle on the eighth hole after his three iron approach landed 10 feet from the pin.
"I have been in decent form. Most parts of my game have been good but I haven't had four good rounds. I had good starts but haven't capitalised on that. Today I kept it going," said Kapur, who is searching for his second Asian Tour victory following the 2005 Volvo Masters of Asia.
"I don't really play 18 holes here very often. I usually come out and play about five holes on the front nine and that's one reason why I did so well," added the Indian, who was one shot shy of his best score on the course.
Karlberg, winner of the Swedish domestic tour Order of Merit in 2007, holed a monster 30 foot birdie putt on the first hole and needed a birdie on the last to ensure a share of the lead which he has held since the opening round.
Randhawa closed with a birdie on the last hole to give himself a chance at the title.
"Today was probably my best round. I didn't putt as good as I thought I should. I could have easily made three more birdies. I'm four shots off the lead but anything can happen on this course," said the 2002 Asian Tour number one.
Among others, veteran Gaurav Ghei (210) slipped down the leaderboard to tied seventh after going three-over 75, one shot ahead of compatriots Manav Jaini (71) and Pappan (72).