Anirban Lahiri was the lone bright spot on an otherwise disappointing day for the Indians at the Worldwide Holdings Selangor Masters on Thursday. Lahiri added an even par 71 to his first round 69 to stay at two-under for the tournament to be tied sixth.
He was three shots behind provisional leader Namchaok Tantipokakul of Thailand, who was five-under, but has three holes to play in the second round. Overnight leader Airil Rizman of Malaysia kept the early halfway lead as weather disrupted play on the second day at the demanding Seri Selangor Golf Club.
Lahiri seemed to be steady at one-under for the front nine, before bogeys on 11th, 13th and 14th derailed him. He did have birdies on the 15th and 17th, to finish at 71.
Rahil Gangjee (75) at four-over 146, Gaganjeet Bhullar (74) and Gaurav Pratap Singh (72) at five-over seemed to be the only ones with a chance of making the cut, which was likely at 147.
Naman Dawar (80), Gaurav Ghei (79), C Muniyappa (78), Vikrant Chopra (78), Digvijay Singh (79), Mandeo Pathania (81) and Amandeep Johl (retd) will have an early week.
Gurki Shergill, Firoz Ali and Himmat Rai were yet to complete their round.
Lahiri, looking for his maiden win on the Asian tour, said: "It's a tough course. You just have to find your way around it. It's my third year here and I've got a bit of knowledge now and it's probably helping me a bit."
"The thing on this course is that it's very easy to drop shots. No matter how good you play, you'll drop shots. It's about keeping your head and minimising the damage. There are a few holes where you can take advantage. I am satisfied. I got off to a bad start but pulled it back nicely. I'm looking forward to the weekend."
On the season so far, Lahiri said: "I didn't play too well in the first half of the year but it's picked up in the last few months. I won a couple of events in India and scoring seems to be coming back and I'm focussing better."
"Things seem to be on an upward curve. I made a few swing changes and I was trying to get my head around playing with it. I'm handling myself better on the course and my short game has also improved."
Airil, the overnight leader, endured a mixed bag of one eagle, two birdies, three bogeys and one double for a one-over-par 72 to hold the clubhouse lead on four-under-par 138.
American Corey Harris shot the day's best of 67, thanks to a inward 31 which hauled him to three-under.
Lahiri joins five others - England's Chris Rodgers and the Filipino quartet of Jay Bayron, Juvic Pagunsan, Mars Pucay and Angelo Que - two strokes behind Airil.
Another Filipino, Ferdinand Aunzo, sank a rare albatross on the fifth hole, the first in three years on the Asian Tour, en route to a 72. It was only the 15th albatross in the Tour history.
Play was suspended for two hours due to a lightning storm in the early afternoon, which will mean round two will only be completed on Friday morning.