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Madappa in lead in Jakarta, Sandhu third

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Press Trust of India Jakarta
Viraj Madappa led a strong start from the Indians as he carded a seven-under-par 65 to share the first round lead with Thailand's Itthipat Buranatanyarat at the Bank BRI Indonesia Open on Thursday.
Ajeetesh Sandhu (66), at Tied-third, and Aman Raj (67), at Tied-sixth, were the other Indians in the Top-10. In addition, Shiv Kapur, S Chikkarangappa and Rashid Khan carded 68 each to be Tied-12th, alongside Daniel Chopra.
Kshitij Naved Kaul, who got a special invite, carded 69 to be Tied-26th, while Om Prakash Chouhan and Aadil Bedi carded 70 each to be Tied-43rd. Chiragh Kumar, Khalin Joshi and M Dharma with 71 each are Tied-60th.
Abhijit Chadha (72), Honey Baisoya (73) and Udayan Mane (73) are further down. Jeev Milkha Singh (78) had a disappointing day.
Madappa and Itthipat held a one-shot advantage over Thailand's Kosuke Hamamoto, Indonesian amateur Naraajie Emerald Ramadhan Putra and India's Sandhu after the trio returned with matching 66s.
Madappa is searching for his second Asian Tour win after his breakthrough on home soil last year while Itthipat is coming into the week fresh from a tied-sixth finish in Kuching a fortnight ago and seeking his maiden victory on the region's premier Tour.
"It has been a while since I felt happy with the way I played. I have been playing well but just not able to put together four good rounds. So it is really satisfying to be able to post a good score for a start today," Madappa said.
"I have been playing well but just not able to believe in myself. I have not been mentally disciplined enough and I was not trusting the shots I knew I could hit. But I have been working on that for a couple of weeks now and it is good to see the results today," he added.
Madappa became the youngest Indian, at the age of 20 years and nine months, to win on the Asian Tour last August. He turned professional in 2017 and made the grade in his first attempt at the Asian Tour Qualifying School last year.
Sandhu, who also has one Asian Tour win, said, "This round has given me much confidence going into the week although I wished I could have played the par-five a little bit.
"But overall it has been good. We had a bit of a break but I have been practicing hard and it is showing in my game today. I hope there is less wind tomorrow so that I can attack the pins.

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First Published: Aug 29 2019 | 6:20 PM IST

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