Noida: The seasoned Shamim Khan brought all his experience to the fore that helped him weather the windy conditions and shoot the day’s best score of four-under 68 to take the third round lead at the Rs. 1 crore Delhi-NCR Open 2023 being played at the Noida Golf Course.
The Delhi-based Shamim (35-69-68), a winner of 17 titles, gained four spots on Thursday to move into a one-shot lead at eight-under 172.
Noida’s Gaurav Pratap Singh (35-68-70), playing at his home course, struck a 70 that included one of only three eagles fired in round three, to climb one spot to second position at seven-under 173.
Delhi golfers Sachin Baisoya (70) and Honey Baisoya (73) as well as Greater Noida’s Sudhir Sharma (74) were in tied third place with totals of six-under 174.
Shamim Khan, who was overnight tied fifth, placed his nine-iron approach shots to perfection to earn birdies on the second and fourth holes. The 44-year-old Shamim, a two-time winner at the Noida Golf Course, made further progress with birdies on the seventh and eighth including a 35-feet conversion on the former.
As the wind wreaked havoc on his back-nine, Khan, a two-time PGTI Order of Merit champion, dropped his first bogey of the day on the 11th. Shamim then adapted to the situation to play percentage golf as he picked up just one birdie on the 14th and made pars on all other holes.
Shamim said, “Club-selection was key today as it was the most windy day of the week so far. It was a very satisfying round considering the tough conditions. I felt I adjusted really well to the conditions after the wind picked up in the latter half of my round. I told myself to look for fairways and greens and not try anything fancy in order to hold on to my advantage.
“I’m quite familiar with the Noida Golf Course having played here quite often in the past. The fact that I’ve tasted success here twice also adds to my confidence going into the last round.”
Gaurav Pratap Singh mixed an eagle, four birdies and four bogeys in round three to jump into contention at a venue where he has won a title previously.
Patna’s Aman Raj aced the 10th during his round of 73 that placed him tied 13th at two-under 178.
Sudhir Sharma maintains lead in round two of Delhi-NCR Open 2023