Last-gasp Eagle puts Siem in front

An eagle at the last has given Marcel Siem the lead after Thursday’s first round at the Avantha Masters in Delhi.

An eagle at the last has given Germany’s number three golfer Marcel Siem an eight-under-par 64 – and with it, the lead after Thursday’s first round of the Avantha Masters in Delhi.
The 2004 Dunhill Championship winner produced a faultless round whilst carding six birdies before hitting his approach shot to the fringe of the green on the par-five ninth – his last – and then rolling in the putt from six metres to move into a one-stroke lead at the DLF Golf and Country Club.
“I cannot remember the last time that I shot 64 to be honest with you,” said Siem. “It must be at least three years ago so I am pretty happy with that. It’s definitely my best round for a few years. I have been playing well for a couple of years but it just hasn’t quite come off for me for a few different reasons.
“I played very solid today, didn’t make a bogey and then finished it off nicely with a great eagle at the last.”
Just behind Siem is Chan Yih-shin of Chinese Taipei who signed for a seven under 65 after he too had eagled the 9th, while England’s John Parry is two shots further back on 67 in a seven-way tie for third that includes veteran compatriot Barry Lane, colourful Dutchman Robert-Jan Derksen, Australian Andrew Dodt, Indian Rahil Gangjee, Thailand’s Thaworn Wiratchant and Singapore’s Lam Chig-Bing.
Said the 22-year-old Parry: “I was pretty solid out there today but nothing spectacular.
“It’s a decent start, though, and I am pleased with how I am playing.
“I probably got a little bit lucky at points out there today but nothing outrageous – it was a pretty fair score.”
Lam was not expecting to go so low, especially given that a bout of food poisoning ruined his preparations.
“I almost couldn’t walk on the course yesterday so I’m quite surprised with how I played today,” he said.
Northern Ireland’s Darren Clarke finished one under following a 71 while World Number 59 Jeev Milkha Singh – the highest ranked player at the tournament – endured a disappointing round with three birdies and as many bogeys leaving him eight shots off the pace.
Richard Bland failed to build on a positive start in his round as the Englishman returned to the clubhouse with a four under 68.
The 37-year-old had enjoyed a blemish-free run heading out whilst picking up four birdies but two additional gains on the back nine were cancelled out by two bogeys.