New Delhi: Chiragh Kumar fired a flawless eight-under 64 to emerge as the sole leader after the opening round of the USD 1.25 million Indian Open at the Delhi Golf Club here on Thursday.
Chiragh slammed in as many as eight birdies, including an 18th hole birdie, to top the leaderboard, pushing Chinese Taipei's Lin Wen-Hong, Ross Bain of Scotland and Myanmar's Zaw Moe, who were sharing the lead till the last hole with a score of seven-under 65, to joint second spot.
Five strokes behind Chiragh, were the Indian quartet of Om Prakash Chouhan, Himmat Rai, Gurki Shergill and SSP Chowrasia, who returned matching 69s, to share the ninth spot with defending champion Rikard Karlberg of Swede and eight others.
World number 55 Edoardo Molinari was tied 36th after returning with a card of one-under 71.
In the morning, Lin set the greens ablaze and emerged as the undisputed leader by noon but as the evening descended on the picturesque Delhi Golf Club, things started to change as the rest of the three gave a late charge to join him at the top, before Chiragh broke off with a last hole birdie at the 18th.
Chiragh blasted four birdies in the front nine at the first, fourth, eighth and ninth holes to take the turn at four-under and then picked up strokes at the 13th, 14th and 17th and 18th holes to reach the apex position.
"My putting was good today. I have been playing consistently for the last three week. At Bombay, I reached the play off, and in the rest two tournaments too I finished in the top 10," he said.
"I was not expecting to shoot 64. I just tried to keep things as simple as possible. I didn't keep any particular score on mind," he said.