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September 27, 2020

Matloob continues to dominate Punjab Golf C’ship

Sports

September 27, 2020

LAHORE: Defending champion Matloob Ahmed of Garrison Golf Club continued to dominate the 39th Punjab Open Golf Championship as it moved into the final phase at the alluring PAF Skyview Golf Course here on Saturday.

At the start of the second 18 holes on Saturday, he was bunched together with M Munir and Talib at the top, but after the conclusion of the second round, Matloob stood out as the superb one. His aggregate score for the two rounds is 138, six under par and though this achievement looks commendable, his marginal advantage over his nearest two rivals is barely one stroke.

While Matloob is placed at a score of gross 138, the two challengers Mohammad Munir (Rawalpindi) and Suleman Akhter (Gymkhana) are placed at a score of gross 139, five under par. This makes the competition intense and on the final day on Sunday (today), these three leading contenders for the Punjab Open title will have to be at their best.

Matloob was relentless in his march to success and excelled in all aspects of the game. His score for the second round was gross 70 and aggregate for two rounds adds up to 136, six under par. Munir, a powerful hitter of the ball and loaded with golfing expertise, was steady in the second round, which enabled him to appear as a strong contender in the final round.

Another pleasant performance came from young Suleman, who displayed champion-like capabilities by shooting approach shots to perfection and putting in a nerve-free mode. His round for the day was simply brilliant and he had a round of 64, an amazing eight under par and made up for his slackness in the first round when he scored a modest 75.

Overall, he has an aggregate score of 139, five under par. The final round will be a great test for him.

Another competitor who oozed with excellence was Talat Ijaz of Lahore Gymkhana. His two under par round of 70 on Saturday placed him in the fourth position on the leaderboard and his aggregate score after two rounds is 141, three under par.

Out of the other established combatants, M Shahzad of Garrison has a score of 142, followed by Ahmed Baig at 143 and promising youngster Zohaib Asif of DHA Karachi at 143. Interestingly the star of the golf circuit of Pakistan, Shabbir Iqbal is placed at a similar score.

The cut was made at the end of the second round and only 41 professionals will play on the final day on Sunday.

In the race for honours among amateurs, the outstanding one is Salman Jehangir of Gymkhana. He has displayed good form and with two rounds scores of 70 and 75 and an aggregate of 145 he occupies the first position. His nearest challenger is Qasim Ali Khan, also of Gymkhana, behind by a margin of four strokes. His aggregate score is 149. Col Rustam Chatta has a score of 154.