India’s Gaganjeet Bhullar is clearly the man to catch at the BNI Indonesian Masters presented by TNE after leading for the second day in a row following a four-under-par 67.
Bhullar put himself on course to win for the fifth time in Indonesia after moving to 12-under here at Royale Jakarta Golf Club, in the final International Series event of the year.
He leads by three from Canadian Richard T. Lee, who also shot a 67, and by four from American Patrick Reed, in with a 68.
Bhullar took to the front after a 63 yesterday and was unchallenged at the top today, starting convincingly with four birdies in his first eight.
He dropped his first shot of the week on nine and another on 17 but they were the only mistakes for a player who has triumphed 10 times on the Asian Tour, the most by an Indian golfer.
“I drove the ball really well yesterday and today,” said the golfer from Amritsar, who chipped in twice today.
“I think one factor which really led me to where I am, 12 under after two rounds, is my driving ability. In the last two rounds I think I only missed two fairways, and the more and more fairways you hit you give yourself more opportunities to be closer to the flag, and that’s what I did yesterday and today.
“The goal was to stay in the moment. The goal was to basically just stay in the zone, stay focused and keep on grinding. Keep on doing what I’m trying to do.”
Bhullar’s most recent win on the Asian Tour came at the Mandiri Indonesia Open in August last year – which marked the third time he had won the event. He first tasted victory on Indonesian soil at the Indonesia President Invitational 14 years ago and based on his form so far this week, another success here looks within range.
Of his success in Indonesia, he commented: “I personally feel that it could be the weather, it could be some sort of thing to do with the greens, with the grass, with the size of fairways or probably the size of rough.”
Three shots back, Lee has once again put himself into position to win his first title on the Asian Tour in six years.
Over the past two seasons, Lee has regularly been in contention, including at the Hong Kong Open last weekend when he claimed third place – his joint best finish of the year as he was also equal third in the Shinhan Donghae Open in September.
And he’ll be hoping that his renewed confidence with the putter will continue over the weekend so he can make it a third win on the Asian Tour, having triumphed in the Solaire Open in 2014 and the Shinhan Donghae Open in 2017.
“I actually finally got my putting back again,” said the 33-year-old.
“Back in form with that, that’s the key to my game. I can strike it pretty well and if I can sink the putts I can go pretty low.
“The change is more set-up based, and eye line. It seems to be working this week, and last week.”
Having started on the back nine, Lee got off to the ideal start when he chipped in for an eagle from 20 yards on the par-five 12th.
He said: “I was pretty happy, it was a good booster, gave me some confidence.”
He also made three birdies on the trot starting on 18.
Reed, the 2018 Masters champion, birdied two out of his last four, including the last. After completing two good days of work, the LIV Golf League star admitted he was hoping to do better.
“It was a frustrating day at three under,” he said.
“It’s just kind of one those days where energy levels are a little low, I couldn’t really get around on a lot of iron shots, a lot of tee shots were blocked a little bit. Yeah, I hit a lot of balls inside 20ft just didn’t make anything and finally made that one on the last which will obviously make it feel a little better for the day.
“Energy levels were a little low this morning but besides that I gave myself a lot of looks, but my putter was a little Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde today.”
Korea’s Seungtaek Lee (65), American Micah Lauren Shin (66), Thailand’s Gunn Charoenkul (68), and Zach Murray (68) from Australia are joint fourth, five behind Bhullar.
Andy Ogletree from the United States looked like he was going to miss his first cut of the season. However, he produced the kind of golf that saw him win this year’s International Series Order of Merit to make it though, with five birdies in the last seven holes. He carded a 65 to finish on three under, narrowly surviving the cut which was made at two-under, the lowest in 11 editions of the tournament.
Defending champion Sarit Suwannarut from Thailand had to withdraw earlier in day, suffering from a migraine.
Scores after round 2 of the BNI Indonesian Masters being played at the par 71, 7324 Yards Royale Jakarta Golf Club course (am – denotes amateur):
130 – Gaganjeet Bhullar (IND) 63-67.
133 – Richard T. Lee (CAN) 66-67.
134 – Patrick Reed (USA) 66-68.
135 – Zach Murray (AUS) 67-68, Gunn Charoenkul (THA) 67-68, Seungtaek Lee (KOR) 70-65, Micah Lauren Shin (USA) 69-66.
136 – Danthai Boonma (THA) 67-69, Mingyu Cho (KOR) 69-67, Chikkarangappa S. (IND) 71-65, Jazz Janewattananond (THA) 66-70, Poom Saksansin (THA) 70-66, Ben Jones (ENG) 68-68, Wade Ormsby (AUS) 66-70, Veer Ahlawat (IND) 69-67, Panuphol Pittayarat (THA) 67-69, Travis Smyth (AUS) 66-70, Jaco Ahlers (RSA) 67-69, Phachara Khongwatmai (THA) 65-71, Bio Kim (KOR) 68-68.
137 – Jonathan Wijono (INA) 68-69, Sadom Kaewkanjana (THA) 70-67, Rashid Khan (IND) 69-68, Lee Chieh-po (TPE) 67-70, Kyongjun Moon (KOR) 68-69, Bjorn Hellgren (SWE) 67-70, Karandeep Kochhar (IND) 69-68, Chapchai Nirat (THA) 67-70.
138 – Miguel Tabuena (PHI) 70-68, Ben Campbell (NZL) 73-65, Siddikur Rahman (BAN) 71-67, Nitithorn Thippong (THA) 69-69, Jack Thompson (AUS) 70-68, Chan Shih-chang (TPE) 71-67, David Puig (ESP) 67-71, Paul Peterson (USA) 65-73, Honey Baisoya (IND) 65-73, Yeongsu Kim (KOR) 69-69, Shahriffuddin Ariffin (MAS) 68-70, Justin Quiban (PHI) 69-69.
139 – Yikeun Chang (KOR) 70-69, Graeme McDowell (NIR) 71-68, Jeremy Gandon (FRA) 69-70, Sihwan Kim (USA) 73-66, Junggon Hwang (KOR) 68-71, James Piot (USA) 71-68, Bai Zhengkai (CHN) 73-66, Prom Meesawat (THA) 70-69, Chang Wei-lun (TPE) 70-69, Neil Schietekat (RSA) 70-69, Kieran Vincent (ZIM) 69-70, Andy Ogletree (USA) 74-65, Douglas Klein (AUS) 71-68, Dominic Foos (GER) 68-71.
140 – Yoseop Seo (KOR) 69-71, Taehee Lee (KOR) 73-67, Yubin Jang (KOR) 74-66, David Drysdale (SCO) 71-69, Anirban Lahiri (IND) 73-67, Sam Brazel (AUS) 70-70, Kosuke Hamamoto (THA) 68-72, Angelo Que (PHI) 71-69, Turk Pettit (USA) 70-70, Todd Sinnott (AUS) 70-70, Jarin Todd (USA) 70-70, Tirawat Kaewsiribandit (THA) 70-70, Kevin Akbar (INA) 73-67, Thomas Pieters (BEL) 70-70, Taichi Kho (HKG) 69-71, Jasper Stubbs (am, AUS) 71-69, Terry Pilkadaris (AUS) 69-71, Settee Prakongvech (THA) 68-72.
141 – Natipong Srithong (THA) 72-69, Ratchanon Chantananuwat (am, THA) 72-69, Atiruj Winaicharoenchai (THA) 73-68, Sanghyun Park (KOR) 72-69, Nick Voke (NZL) 72-69, Steve Lewton (ENG) 70-71, Ajeetesh Sandhu (IND) 70-71, Jbe Kruger (RSA) 71-70, Yashas Chandra (IND) 69-72, Lloyd Jefferson Go (PHI) 68-73.
142 – Denwit Boriboonsub (THA) 69-73, Scott Hend (AUS) 72-70, Andrew Dodt (AUS) 73-69, Wang Wei-hsuan (TPE) 72-70, Yongjun Bae (KOR) 73-69, S.S.P. Chawrasia (IND) 69-73, Yonggu Shin (CAN) 73-69, Hanmil Jung (KOR) 71-71, Matthew Cheung (HKG) 72-70.
143 – Peter Gunawan (INA) 75-68, Tanapat Pichaikool (THA) 73-70, Benita Kasiadi (INA) 73-70, Elki Kow (INA) 68-75, Ian Snyman (RSA) 69-74, Peter Uihlein (USA) 76-67.
144 – Matt Killen (ENG) 70-74, Faisal Salhab (KSA) 77-67, Michael Maguire (USA) 75-69, Itthipat Buranatanyarat (THA) 75-69, Pavit Tangkamolprasert (THA) 74-70, Rory Hie (INA) 73-71.
145 – Pawin Ingkhapradit (THA) 71-74, Ferdinand Mueller (GER) 72-73, Saud Al Sharif (KSA) 73-72, Hung Chien-yao (TPE) 72-73, Berry Henson (USA) 71-74, Naraajie Ramadhanputra (INA) 73-72.
146 – Almay Rayhan Yagutah (INA) 69-77, Liu Yen-hung (TPE) 73-73, Chanat Sakulpolphaisan (THA) 73-73, Chen Guxin (CHN) 73-73, George Gandranata (INA) 72-74, Chonlatit Chuenboonngam (THA) 73-73, Kevin Yuan (AUS) 73-73, John Lyras (AUS) 69-77, Seandy Alfarabi (INA) 76-70.
147 – Nicholas Fung (MAS) 76-71, David Hague (ENG) 71-76, Suradit Yongcharoenchai (THA) 73-74, Miguel Carballo (ARG) 72-75.
148 – Shiv Kapur (IND) 77-71, Mardan Mamat (SIN) 76-72, Suteepat Prateeptienchai (THA) 74-74, Randy Arbenata Bintang (am, INA) 75-73, Tom Power Horan (AUS) 69-79, Asep Saefulloh (INA) 73-75.
149 – Alex Ching (USA) 73-76.
150 – Koh Deng Shan (SIN) 75-75.
151 – Dodge Kemmer (USA) 77-74.
152 – Marcus Fraser (AUS) 76-76.
153 – Khalid Walid Attieh (am, KSA) 77-76, Bradley Taslim (INA) 79-74, Thammasack Bouahom (LAO) 75-78.
155 – Othman Almulla (KSA) 77-78, Ye Wocheng (CHN) 76-79, Jamel Ondo (INA) 77-78.
162 – Rayhan Abdul Latief (am, INA) 74-88.
163 – Nasin Surachman (INA) 83-80.
-2 (140) was the final cut, 72 players made the cut
Doyeob Mun, Korea – RT
S. Syukrizal, Indonesia – RT
Sarit Suwannarut, Thailand – WD
Ben Leong, Malaysia – WD