In a reconfirmation of sorts that the Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI) is as much about those who prefer playing in the country as those who are exploring foreign shores, Vijay Kumar and Raju Ali Mollah took the first-day lead in the Players Championship at the RCGC on Wednesday.
Vijay and Raju are contrasting creatures - the former a veteran with numerous titles and the latter a 32-year-old who is still trying to find his feet after having won his maiden title last year. But they both carded scores of six-under 66.
Among the prominent ones trailing were SSP Chowrasia (sole third at five-under), Gaganjeet Bhullar (tied eighth with 69), Gaurav Ghei and Anirban Lahiri (tied 10th at 70), Mukesh Kumar (tied 18th at 71), and Rahil Gangjee (tied 25th with an even-par round).
Vijay recovered from a bogey on the 11th with a birdie on the next and saved par after hitting a tree with his tee shot on the ninth. A tally of 26 putts was rewarded with seven birdies.
Raju had a spotless round with six birdies, while Chowrasia completed a roller coaster day with seven birdies and five bogies.