MUMBAI: Seher Atwal overcame a double bogey on the back nine to maintain her dominance at the third leg of the Hero Women’s Pro Golf Tournament at the Bombay Presidency Golf Club on Thursday. Seher, who shot a superb 5-under 65 on the first day, added one-under 69 to stay three shots clear of her nearest rivals – amateur Avani Prashanth (70) and the experienced Amandeep Drall (71). Seher was six-under 134 for 36 holes while Avani and Amandeep were 3-under 137.
Hitaashee Bakshi added 71 to her first round 66 and at 139 was fourth, while Rhea Purvi Sarvanan carded 4-under 66 to rise from overnight T-16 to T-5th at even par 140 with Vani Kapoor (68-72) and Jahanvi Bakshi (66-74).
The tournament is also turning out to be a feast for hole-in-ones as amateur Nishna Patel became the third player to get an ace in the official rounds. She did so on the Par-3 13th, while Dugra Nittur and Lakhmehar Pardesi had done so on the Par-3 10th on the first day. In the practice round, Ridhima Dilawari had also landed an ace.
Nishna Patel (72-69) moved into the Top-10 and was Tied-8th with fellow amateur Nayanika Sanga (69-72) while Khushi Khanijau (70-72) was 10th.
Pranavi Urs hurt her wrist and withdrew while Neha Tripathi, who was unwell on the first day also withdrew. Among some well-known names, Ridhima (72-72) was T-12 and Diksha Dagar (77-72) was 19th.
Seher, who is related to Indian golf legend Arjun Atwal and spent four years on the college team at Rollins in the US, continued her solid play. She had two birdies against one bogey on front nine. She got to 2-under with birdie on 10th, but was derailed with a double bogey on Par-4 12th. A birdie on Par-5 16th helped her stay under par for the day and she stays on course for her maiden professional title.
Amateur Avani Prashanth, seeking to join the list of amateurs to have won on the pro circuit, had a birdie on first and 18th and dropped two shots in between for 70.
Amandeep Drall, 3-under through the first five holes, dropped three bogeys and a double on Par-4 12th but picked a birdie on 18th for 71 and was tied second.
The day’s best scorer, Rhea Purvi Sarvanan had five birdies against just one bogey in her 66.
The final round shall see Seher and Avani battle it out for their first title on the Hero WPGT while Amandeep Drall seeks to extend her lead at the top of the Order of Merit, which is combined for 2020-21.
Tee times for the third and final round:
8:00 AM; Astha Madan 167; Ishvari Prasanna 164; 8:10: Geetika Ahuja 163; Saaniya Sharma 160; 8:20: Rhea Jha 160; Khushi Hooda (A) 159; Mehar Atwal 159 8:30: Jyotsana Singh 157; Ayesha Kapur 156; Oviya Reddi 155; 8:45: Lakhmehar Pardesi 154; Disha Kavery 154; Shriya Vivek 153; 8:55: Trimann Saluja 153; Durga Nittur 150; Diksha Dagar 149; 9:05: Shweta Mansingh 148; Vidhatri Urs (A) 148; Shagun Narain 147; 9:15: Ananya Datar 144; Ridhima Dilawari 144; Gauri Karhade 144; 9:30: Sneha Singh (A) 144; Asmitha Sathish 143; Khushi Khanijau 142; 9:40: Nayanika Sanga (A); 141 Nishna Patel (A) 141; Jahanvi Bakshi 140; 9:50: Vani Kapoor 140; Rhea Purvi S. 140; Hitaashee Bakshi 139; 10:00 AM: Amandeep Drall 137; Avani Prashanth (A) 137; Seher Atwal 134.