PGTI Final Qualifying: Varun Parikh lands two eagles, surges into the second-round lead

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Varun Parikh (67-69), playing in his hometown Ahmedabad, landed two eagles during his second round of three-under 69 to move up one spot into a two-shot lead at eight-under 136 in the Final Qualifying Stage of the TATA Steel PGTI Qualifying School 2022 at the Kalhaar Blues & Greens Golf Club.

Gurugram-based Sunhit Bishnoi (66-72), the first-round leader, closed the day in second place at six-under 138 after his 72 on Wednesday.

The cut was applied at 11-over 155. Out of a field of 121, the top 82 players including 15 amateurs made the cut.

The 23-year-old Parikh, who was overnight second and one-shot off the lead, made a steady start with pars on the first four holes before landing his four-iron approach to within six feet of the hole for an eagle on the par-5 fifth. Varun, a professional since 2019, capitalized on the next par-5, the eighth hole as well, making a 12-feet birdie conversion there.

On the back-nine Parikh conceded bogeys on the 10th, 12th and 15th but also chipped in on the 14th for his second eagle of the day and sank a 10-footer for birdie on the 17th to stay in front of the rest at the halfway stage.

Manish Thakran (69-71) was placed third at four-under 140.

The seasoned Vijay Kumar, a former Indian Open champion, struck a hole-in-one on the second hole during his round of 74. He was placed tied eighth at even-par 144.

At the end of round four, the top 40 players will earn their full cards for the 2022 PGTI season.

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