India’s Anirban Lahiri is a staggering 55 under par for his last 14 rounds at the Venetian Macao Open – and by the law of probability he will be first or second when the final putt drops in the US$1.1 million event tomorrow night.
Lahiri moved ominously to the top of a crowded leaderboard after a “disappointing” three-under 68 left him in a five-way tie for the lead at eight-under-par 134 after the second round.
Joint overnight leader Ian Poulter struggled to a three-over 75 to slip back to five under, while European Ryder Cup captain Darren Clarke missed the cut by three shots. World No 14 Branden Grace (69-71) was still in touch but six shots back at two under.
Lahiri, 29, has moulded his game to the Macau Golf Country Club course with a victory in 2014 sandwiched by two runners-up spots behind Australian Scott Hend. Lahiri’s 68 on Thursday included an early triple bogey but he recovered to share the lead with compatriot Chikkarangappa S. (69-65), Kalem Richardson (67-67), of Australia, Scott Vincent (70-64), of Zimbabwe, and Thai Sutijet Kooratanapisan (68-66).
“The triple bogey was obviously not the start I was looking for, but I was confident if I could claw myself back, I could put a score together,” said Lahiri.
“I’m still a bit disappointed I didn’t birdie one of the last three holes. However, I’m happy to keep myself in it.”
Lahiri is also recovering from a shoulder injury.
“My shoulder is beginning to heal and the nerves are settling down. I’m happy and I’m definitely in a better place physically. When I get to this golf course, I’m in a good place mentally.”
The same could not be said for Sutijet, who was mourning the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej. “I’m happy with my score but I feel so bad as we have just lost our king. He was the best of the kings.”