Date: March 16, 2013
Author: Omnisport

Nirat, Liang grab halfway lead in India

Thailand&aposs Chapchai Nirat and China&aposs Wenchong Liang share the lead at the halfway stage of the Avantha Masters on Friday. The pair each posted rounds of six-under 66 to move two strokes clear on top of the leaderboard at the Jaypee Greens Golf and Spa Resort in Delhi. Nirat, who has one European Tour title to his name, started the day five shots off the pace but an improved second round, which included seven birdies, saw him surge into the lead at 12-under alongside Liang. Current Asian Tour Order of Merit leader Chawalit Plaphol is one of four players tied for third at 10-under. The Thai carded a four-under 68 and he was joined by Scotland&aposs David Drysdale (67), Englishman Tommy Fleetwood (65) and Finland&aposs Joonas Granberg (67). Overnight leader Chinnarat Phadungsil suffered a fall from grace on day two as he slipped to equal seventh. Having posted an opening 61, which fell just one stroke shy of equalling the Asian Tour &aposs low 18-hole score record, Phadungsil could only manage a two-over 74 on Friday. Indian pair Rahil Gangjee (66) and Abhijit Singh Chadha (69), Australian Scott Hend (68), Finn Jaakko Makitalo (68), Frenchman Julien Quesne (66) and Brazil&aposs Adilson Da Silva (65) were also three shots off the pace. South African Thomas Aiken (69) and Swede Rikard Karlberg (69) dropped seven places to 14th, four shots adrift alongside Germany&aposs Maximilian Kieffer (68), South Korean Seuk-Hyun Baek (68), Spaniard Pablo Larrazabal (68) and Thailand&aposs Kiradech Aphibarnrat (68). Triple European Tour winner Brett Rumford of Australia went bogey-free during his round of 69 to head into day three tied for 20th on seven-under.