Olympic-bound Lahiri moves to T-10 at Barbasol Championship

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Nicholasville (Kentucky), Jul 17 (PTI) Indian golfer Anirban Lahiri's plan to seal his PGA Tour card for 2022 got a big boost as he shot a 5-under 67 to move to T-10 at the Barbasol Championship here.

Lahiri, who had a late double bogey in the first round, made amends with a 28-foot birdie on the last in the second round. The 34-year-old Lahiri, with a two-day total of 9-under 135, moved to T-10 at the halfway stage.

Lahiri is four shots behind leader JT Poston, who shot a bogey-free 6-under 66 to take the second-round lead at 13-under 131 at the rain-soaked tournament that was delayed twice because of rain and lightning.

Lahiri played solidly, finding 10 fairways and 15 greens in regulation, and had six birdies against a lone bogey.

“I've been playing really solid. I think yesterday and today, both days, played really good. It was a bit unfortunate to have a rough end yesterday, a bad hole to finish but I feel like all my departments are where they need to be.

'Could have chipped maybe a little bit better but in general I've been feeling good about my game. I've been driving it good and now I'm beginning to finally start hitting my irons the way I would like to,” said Lahiri, who had birdies on three of the four par-5s and missed another on the par-5 8th hole.

With Lahiri heading to the Tokyo Olympics next week, he will miss the 3M Open leaving only the Barracuda Championships and Wyndham Championships to make to the top-125 of the FedExCup standings to qualify for the lucrative Playoffs next month.

It will also help him retain his card for next season’s PGA TOUR, where he has plied his trade since 2016.

Lahiri, who last won in 2015 at the Hero Indian Open, has two top-10s this season, with T-5 at the Valero Texas Open in April but his season was disrupted after he contracted COVID-19. It took a toll on his strength and speed.

'It’s been a challenging year. I've had a lot of things happen just with my status, limited starts, played well in the fall, didn't play well early in the season, and just when I worked up into form, I had a bad bout of COVID,” said Lahiri, who lost 7kg when he was down with the coronavirus.

'This is my fourth week in a row. This is the first time I'm doing that since my recovery from COVID two and a half months ago. So I'm really happy with how my body's holding up.

'I'm feeling good, so I know as long as I can check those boxes, I can do what I need to do. I know what needs to be done to get it done. I'm just keeping my head down and playing my golf.” Ryan Armour and Joseph Bramlett were a stroke back, each shooting 67.

Brian Stuard, tied for the first-round lead after a 64, shot a 69 to drop into a tie for fourth at 11-under. PTI COR BS BS

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