Ibaraki, Japan, May 14: Ajeetesh Sandhu played a second straight 69 to get to 2-under 208 and is now Tied-11 at the Asia Pacific Open Golf Championship Diamond Cup. Sandhu, who has to his credit a win on the Japan Challenge Tour, was steady as he found 12 of the 18 greens and nine of the 14 fairways, but needed 29 putts to go through the round.
After a bogey on fifth, he birdied 11th and 15th and parred the rest for a solid round.
Japan’s Kaito Onishi stayed on top of the leader board but was joined by countrymen Yuto Katsuragawa (67) and Ryuko Tokimatsu (66) and New Zealander Ben Campbell (66).
Onishi, the leader after the first two rounds, carded a one-over-par 71 to finish the day on seven under at Oarai Golf Club, while Tokimatsu, who had a hole in one, and Campbell both returned 66s and Katsuragawa came in with a 67.
Japan’s Shugo Imahira (69) and Yuki Inamori (70) are one stroke further back, in the Asian Tour Japan Golf Tour Organisation (JGTO) jointly-sanctioned event.
Onishi has only been a professional for a year and yet he is on the threshold of his first JGTO victory.
Campbell’s joint lowest round of the day, made up of six birdies and two bogeys, has put him is position to claim a second pro win, to go alongside his 2018 New Zealand PGA Championship success.
One player to watch will be Katsuragawa, who currently leads the JGTO Money List with first and second place finishes to his name this season.
Tokimatsu is the most experienced of the front runners, winning three times on the JGTO from 2016 to 2018, and his attempt to add a fourth was helped considerably by an ace on the par-three fourth, where he hit an eight irons from 160 yards.