Friday, 19 March 2010
Avantha Masters - Round One  (Getty Images)
Avantha Masters - Round One (Getty Images)

Germany's Marcel Siem put his success down to an unlikely source after an eagle at his final hole led to an eight under par 64 and secured a one stroke lead after the opening round of the inaugural Avantha Masters.

The 29 year old, searching for only his second win on The European Tour, produced a flawless round that included six birdies before nailing an eagle putt from almost 20 feet on the ninth hole - his last - to edge ahead of the rest of the field.

And Siem admitted he had taken putting tips from a local 16 year old female player to help deal with the difference between the greens in India and Europe.

“They are a bit grainy which can be difficult for the Europeans to adapt to sometimes, but I got a pretty good lesson from Vani Kapoor yesterday,” said Siem. “She is a young 16 year old scratch player, probably the best young female player in India and she was so aggressive on the greens and she showed me the way. I have to say that she was my putting inspiration and she is a very good player.”

Chinese Taipei's Chan Yin-shin also produced an eagle on the ninth and is just behind Siem in second place after signing for a seven under 65 at the DLF Golf and Country Club.

Siem's last victory on The European Tour came six years ago at the Dunhill Championship and he is hoping his impressive performance could signal a change in fortunes.

"I played very solid today, didn't make a bogey and then finished it off nicely with a great eagle at the last," he said. "The iron play was really good and I putted well.

"I cannot remember the last time that I shot 64 to be honest with you. It must be at least three years ago so I am pretty happy with that. It's definitely my best round for a few years."

England's John Parry is in touch with the early pacesetters after shooting six birdies against one bogey for a five under 67.

The 22 year old from Harrogate is tied third alongside compatriot Barry Lane, Dutchman Robert-Jan Derksen, Lam Chih-bing of Singapore, Thailand's Thaworn Wiratchant and Andrew Dodt of Australia.

"It was pretty solid out there today but nothing spectacular," said Parry. "It's a decent start and I am pleased with how I am playing.

"I probably got a little bit lucky at points out there today but nothing outrageous - it was a pretty fair score."

Lam was not expecting to go so low, especially given a bout of food poisoning ruined his preparations.

“I almost couldn’t walk on the course yesterday so I’m quite surprised with how I played today,” he said.

Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke finished one under following a 71 while World Number 59 Jeev Milkha Singh - the highest ranked player at the tournament - endured a disappointing round with three birdies and as many bogeys leaving him eight shots off the pace.


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