KARACHI, July 6: Eminent golfer Shabbir Iqbal of Islamabad and little-known M Afzal of Sindh Regimental Centre stole the limelight sharing the first round lead by carding six under 66 apiece in the Rs1.3m 14th Sindh Open Golf Championship, which teed off at Arabian Sea Country Club on Friday.
Shabbir, who accumulated his best CNS Open scores scooping eighth title by 13 strokes, was off to solid start firing two birdies and as many eagles to live up to his reputation.
However, Afzal also caught the eye by making a mark in the first round of the 54-hole contest to jointly lead the pack of 87 pros.
Tied in the second position three strokes behind with three under 69 are Sajid Khan of Islamabad and M. Asif of Raya Golf Club Lahore.
Holder Mohammad Munir of Islamabad along with recipient of Hole-in-One car in the CNS Open in the preceding week, Danyaal Jahangir, shot one over 73 apiece and tied in sixth place with nine other golfers.
M. Rehman of Lahore’s Royal Palm Golf Club scored one over 73 to emerge first round leader in the amateurs’ event. His score include five birdies — three on the front nine and two on back nine — a double bogey and three bogeys.
On his heels with three over 75 are Wasim Rana of the DHA and Mohammad Ali Hai of the KGC.
Young Mubariz Ahmed of Islamabad had a poor first round card of seven over 79 to trail behind.
Meanwhile, the 36 holes senior pros event begins on Saturday.
Results: First round leaders: Open:
66 — Shabbir Iqbal (Islamabad); M. Afzal (Sindh Regimental Centre).
69 — Sajid Khan (Islamabad); M. Asif (Raya Golf Club).
70 — M. Safdar Khan (Gujranwala); Waheed Baloch (KGC); M. Nazir (Islamabad); Ashir Masih (Gymkhana).
71 — M. Tariq (Islamabad); M. Akhtar (Islamabad); Latif Rafique (Gymkhana); Ali Asghar (Islamabad); Ansar Mahmood (Islamabad).
Amateurs: 73 — M. Rehman (RPGC).
75 — Wasim Rana (DHA), Mohammad Ali Hai (KGC).
76 — Ghazanfar Mahmood (RPGC).
77 — Salman Jahangir (Gymkhana).
78 — Sameer Merchant (DHA).
79 — Mubariz Ahmed (Islamabad).